EU Legislation, Initiatives, etc.

WAG: A £35m scheme to help people facing redundancy has been announced by the Welsh Assembly Government.  The ReAct programme is intended to help over 12,000 redundant workers gain new employment or training, and is made possible with over £15m from the European Social Fund, which is managed by the Assembly Government – See ‘In the News’ section for more information.
 
Defra: A national package of advice & support for farmers preparing for the new Nitrate Pollution Prevention Regulations has been launched by Defra.  The regulations come into force on 1 January 2009 and update the UK's implementation of the 1991 EU Nitrates Directive.
 
Around 60% of nitrate pollution in water is caused by agriculture and it is vital that this is tackled to protect & sustain the quality of the UK's drinking water.  Farmers with land located in a Nitrate Vulnerable Zone (NVZ) should receive a letter within the next few days about how the new rules will affect them.
 
As NVZs now cover almost 70% of England, farmers who do not receive this letter should find out if they are in an NVZ using the detailed maps available on the Defra website.
Press release ~ Cross Compliance – Maps and briefing events ~ Defra: Nitrates - reducing water pollution from agriculture ~ National package of advice & support for Pollution Prevention Regulations (Loaded shortly) ~ Free software tools developed to provide extra help with some of the calculations
 
DECC: The Government intends to auction 4m allowances at the first EU ETS auction in the UK on 19 November 2008.  During 2009 the Government plans to auction 25m allowances.  The first UK auction will provide for a competitive bidding facility.  
 
Bids must be placed through an intermediary, referred to as a Primary Participant.  Subsequent auctions will include a non-competitive component to facilitate direct access to the auctions for the smaller compliance buyers.  VAT will be chargeable on EU allowances in order to avoid any distortion of competition with existing carbon markets.
Press release ~ Department of Energy and Climate Change (DECC) ~ UNFCCC ~ Treasury Regulations ~ Debt Management Office - EU Emissions Trading Scheme (EU ETS) ~ Defra – EU ETS
 
WAG: Welsh companies have been warned that they only have until the 1 December 2008to pre-register any chemicals they manufacture, import or recover from waste with a new Europe-wide scheme, or face their goods being withdrawn from the market.
 
REACH – Registration, Evaluation, Authorisation and restriction of Chemicals – replaces a number of regulations with a single system.  It aims to protect people and the environment from the use of chemicals.  Crucially, it aims to make people who place chemicals on the market responsible for understanding and managing the risks associated with their use.
Press release ~ WAG – Chemicals and REACH ~ UK Chemicals Stakeholder Forum
Our recent Community Testing success for Local Authorities