In the News
The Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs has released additional guidance, published on HSE’s Brexit webpages, on how chemical businesses and other stakeholders will be affected in the event of a no deal outcome.
This guidance expands on, and should be read in conjunction with, the Technical Notice published on 24 September 2018.
In preparation for Brexit the government has published statutory instruments in relation to environmental assessments and the planning regime. Before these statutory instruments are formally laid in Parliament, they have to go through a sifting process. These instruments make no substantive changes of policy, but when the UK leaves the European Union (EU) these instruments will ensure the continued smooth operation of the following regimes relating to the environment and the planning system:Environmental Impact Assessment – which aims to ensure that environmental considerations are taken into account at the development consent stage of the planning process Strategic Environmental Assessment – which aims to ensure that environmental considerations are taken into account at the strategic plan-making stage of the planning process Hazardous Substances Regulations – these ensure that the objectives of preventing major accidents, and limiting the consequences of such accidents, are taken into account in land-use planning
These instruments also make a small number of amendments to other planning legislation, for example where there are references to obligations in EU law which are redundant or no longer appropriate.
The amendments in these instruments will ensure that these regimes will continue to operate as they did before the date we leave the EU will not be retrospective, and so there will be no need to re-examine any decisions made before our EU exit purely as a result of these changes.
REACH after BREXIT
HSE announce that subject to conclusion and ratification of the draft Withdrawal Agreement, an implementation period will start on 30 March 2019 and last until 31 December 2020. During the implementation period and subject to finalisation of the Withdrawal Agreement:Registrations, approvals, authorisations and classifications in place before March 2019 will continue to be valid during the implementation period in the same way that they are now. REACH will continue to apply to the UK during the implementation period. The process for registering new chemicals under REACH during the implementation period will remain the same as it is now, which will require UK companies to register with the European Chemicals Agency (ECHA). During the implementation period, the UK will recognise all new registrations, approvals, authorisations and classifications granted by the EU. During the implementation period, we expect that HSE will not be able to act as a ‘leading authority’ to conduct certain assessments under the Plant Protection Products, Biocides and REACH regulations. We will work with affected businesses to minimise disruption and delay to their ongoing assessments. UK-based businesses will have the same rights during the implementation period as EU-based businesses to have their cases accepted and processed by ‘leading authorities’ based in other EU member states. HSE will continue to process product applications under the Biocidal and Plant Protection Products Regulation for the UK market under the national authorisation route during the implementation period. Any applications will be considered against the current rules and standards.