Waste operators are experiencing significant delays with environmental permit applications submitted to the Environment Agency due to the coronavirus pandemic. Operators are reporting delays of over 6 months before the Agency undertakes the ‘duly made’ assessment and allocates the application to an officer for determination. The Agency’s performance target is to assess and determine applications within 3 months for standard rules permits and 4 months for bespoke applications. Applications are now taking in excess of 8 months to issue which is causing delays in waste site developments and the drive to increase the recycling infrastructure in the country. The Environment Agency was unable to comment on when the situation would improve or provide operators with expected dates when their applications will be assessed. Operators should factor into site development plans the increased permit application times which will be experienced. This will be particularly relevant where proposed sites are integral to procurement tenders.
If you require advice on an environmental permit application please contact us.