Environmental Responsibility

The Regulation on the partial development of the Law on Environmental Responsibility is amended

Published 14/04/15

On the 7th of April, 2015 the  Royal Decree 183/2015, of the 13th of March, by which it modifies the Regulation of the partial development of the Law 26/2007, of the 23rd of October, of Environmental Responsibility approved by the Royal Decree 2090/2008, of the 22nd of December was published (BOE num. 83, of the 7th of April, 2015).

The Royal Decree is structured in a single article and the amendments that were introduced in the original law are intended to clarify, correct or delete certain aspects, on the basis of the experience gained since the publication of the Regulation.

Main modifications on Environmental Responsibility Regulations

  • Obligation to constitute a financial guarantee, and therefore required to communicate to the competent authority as per article 24.3 of Law 26/2007 of the 23rd of October, and in article 33 of this Regulation, operators of the following activities of the Annex III of the Law:
  1. Activities and installations subject to the scope of Royal Decree 1254/1999 of the 16th of July approving measures to control the risks inherent in serious accidents involving dangerous substances.
  2. Activities and facilities subject to the scope of Law 16/2002, of the 1st of July, on integrated pollution prevention and control.
  3. Operators who possess facilities with mining waste classified as Category A according to the provisions of Royal Decree 975/2009 of the 12th of June on waste management in the extractive industries and the protection and rehabilitation of the land affected by mining activities.
  • Operators of other activities which are not included in any of the above assumptions shall be exempt from constituting the compulsory financial guarantee, as well as for the communication provided for in article 24.3.
  • The wording of article 33 is modified by introducing a new method for the fixing of the amount of the financial guarantee, simplifying the process for the operator. It will only be necessary to quantify the environmental damage generated, and monetise it, for a single selected scenario, instead of for all the identified scenarios.
  • The requirement of verification of an environmental risk analyses is eliminated and replaced by a declaration of environmental responsibility by the operator that the aforementioned analysis and the Constitution of the financial guarantee have been carried out in compliance with all the requirements imposed by law and regulation.

Other modifications on Environmental Responsibility Regulations

  • Indicates that the minimum amount of the financial guarantee will be updated in the terms indicated in the policy or in the relevant instrument of the constitution of the financial guarantee, or at the request of the competent authority in cases which is deemed necessary for the fulfilment of the law.
  • It introduces the possibility that holders of economic or professional activities are subject, by other standards, to the obligation to provide bail or to hire insurance of liability that cover harm to third parties including people, material and the restoration of natural resources. This may replace bonds and insurance for others by covering also the responsibilities arising from Law 26/2007 of the 23rd of October, or to complement them for this same purpose.
  • Modification of the method used for calculating complementary and compensatory repair measures.

The completion of an environmental risk analysis will be mandatory when the constitution of the compulsory financial guarantee is required to be fixed for each sector of activity through the ministerial orders.

The generic report models for environmental risks for every sector or depending the case, its corresponding methodological guide, as well as the table of scales, as informed favorably by the Technical Commission of Prevention and Repair of Environmental Damage, will be the instruments that the operators will be able to use voluntary in order to complete the environmental risk analysis and to fix the quantity of the mandatory financial guarantee.

All the modifications set out include a reduction of the administrative burdens for the operators and a simplification of the administrative procedures referred to in the regulation, in particular the one to determine the financial guarantee.

The entry into force of the Royal decree will take place on April 27th, when the modifications introduced will finally be implemented.

We remind you that Emgrisa has extensive experience in the elaboration of environmental risk analyses. For more information please contact us.


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