Environmental permit applications


Certain industrial activities have the potential to cause pollution risks to human health and the environment.

By law, these activities are regulated to ensure there are proper controls in place, so any risks identified are mitigated.

This is known as environmental permitting and is governed by the Environmental Permitting (England & Wales) Regulations 2016.

You may need an environmental permit if you carry out an activity that could:

  • pollute the air, water or land
  • adversely affect land drainage
  • increase flood risk

You are breaking the law if you operate without a permit when you should have one.

Checks and enforcement

If you are granted a permit, you are held to certain conditions by the regulatory authority. This will be either the Environment Agency or your local authority, depending on what sort of activities you are carrying out.

Inspections are carried out on activities, taking into account the:

  • nature of the hazard
  • compliance with permit conditions
  • costs and risks to the environment
  • risk to human health

Business activity is then rated as either low, medium or high risk depending on the outcome of inspections.

The conditions within permits help to maintain a careful balance between human activity and environmental protection.