Environmental Investigations

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Environment Agency Investigations

We have a team of expert regulatory lawyers who are experienced in advising corporate and individual clients on various different types of Environment Agency Investigations.

The law governing the protection of the environment is complex and affects both businesses and individuals. The penalties for breach can be substantial, including heavy fines, imprisonment and the suspension or revocation of a licence. The legislation provides for regulation of activities that have the potential to cause pollution of the land, air or water:

Enforcing the legislation

Authorised Environment Agency Officers from the Environment Agency are granted powers that are similar to those of the police..

They have the power to enter land and non-residential premises and remove documents for inspection. In certain limited circumstances they can enter residential premises. Enforcement notices – controlled waste

The occupier of land on which controlled waste has been unlawfully deposited can be served with a notice requiring him to remove it within a specified time and/or to take specified steps with a view to eliminating or reducing the consequences.

Failure to comply is an offence and in certain circumstances the Environment Agency may remove the waste and seek to recover its costs. These may be considerable, particularly if the waste is special or hazardous waste.

Works Notices – controlled waters

If the Agency considers that poisonous, noxious or polluting material is present in, or likely to enter controlled waters, it can serve a works notice on the person(s) responsible, requiring them to carry out works and operations necessary to prevent or mitigate the pollution.

The Agency may also carry out such works and operations itself and seek to recover its costs from the person(s) responsible. These costs can be considerable.

Enforcement and suspension notices – installations

If the Agency considers that an authorised installation is being operated in breach of any condition of the permit, the Agency can serve an enforcement notice requiring steps to be taken to remedy the breach.

If the Agency considers that there is an imminent risk of serious pollution, it can serve a suspension notice directing that the operation is suspended until the notice is withdrawn, which may cause the business to shut down.

Get in touch

Contact us if you have a problem in relation to an environmental law issue, or if you would simply like to discuss these issues with one of our environmental solicitors in strict confidence and without obligation:

  • Request a free call back using the form on the right
  • Phone us during office hours on 0333 888 4040
  • Email us at help@richardnelsonllp.co.uk.

Who Can Help You?

Mark Wilson, Partner at Richard Nelson LLP

Mark Wilson


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What we do...

Our expert environmental lawyers can help you with the following::

• If you are already receiving routine inspections from an enforcement authority and they have identified areas of concern and asked you to make improvements, we can make representations on your behalf.
• If you are later asked to take part in a formal interview at the Agency’s offices, we can assist you in deciding whether to agree to such an interview and, if so, be present to represent you throughout the interview.
• If you have received, or expect to receive, an enforcement, suspension or works notice, we can advise you as to whether you should consider appealing the issue of the notice, or make representations on your behalf as to the terms of the notice.
• If you receive a summons alleging one or more pollution offences, we can advise you as to the prospects of successfully defending the case and can represent you in Court.

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