Angus MacDonald’s Environment Committee calls for views on environmental regulation reform
Wednesday, 15 May 2013 14:50
Rural Affairs, Climate Change and Environment Committee
Legislation that aims to simplify regulation that protects our environment and introduces new enforcement and sentencing powers for tackling environmental crime will be scrutinised by the Rural Affairs, Climate Change and Environment Committee.
The Regulatory Reform (Scotland) Bill will also change the way that the Scottish Environment Protection Agency operates and will give it a broader purpose of contributing to sustainable economic growth and improving the health and wellbeing of local communities.
Speaking as the Committee launches a call for views, local MSP Angus MacDonald who is a member of the Scottish Parliament’s Environment Committee said:
“This legislation will strengthen enforcement and sentencing powers with the aim of better protecting our environment.
“It is particularly relevant to Falkirk district, given the types of industries we have here, and are currently being attracted to the area.
“Protecting our environment and our citizens is important not only to protect health and preserve the diversity of our wildlife but for the thousands of people that enjoy Scotland’s natural beauty along with key sectors of our local economy – from farming and tourism to the petrochemical and agrichemical industries.
“Our Committee wants to hear a diverse range of views so that we can look at the proposals in detail and make sure they deliver for Scotland’s environment.
“Given the importance of better regulation to Falkirk district I would urge all interested parties, including community councils and individuals with views on better regulation to submit evidence to my committee The deadline for receipt of written submissions is Monday 20 May 2013. The Committee prefers to receive written submissions electronically. You will find all the contact details for the committee here http://www.scottish.parliament.uk/parliamentarybusiness/CurrentCommittees/29876.aspx “
The Committee will focus on Part 2 of the bill that deals with environmental regulation and is looking for views on the following issues:
- The proposals for regulatory powers for Scottish Ministers in relation to protecting and improving the environment, regulating environmental activities and implementing relevant EU obligations.
- The proposed powers of enforcement for SEPA, including non-compliance penalties, enforcement undertakings and the operation of penalties and cost recoveries.
- The proposed powers to be given to the Courts in connection to compensation orders, consideration of financial benefits when imposing fines and publicity orders.
- The proposals that relate to local authorities in connection with contaminated land, special sites and air quality assessments.
- The proposals to make changes to the general purpose of SEPA to ensure that in carrying out its functions it contributes to the health and well-being of the people of Scotland and achieving sustainable economic growth.
- On the element of part 1, as it relates to the RACCE Committee’s remit, that places a duty on stakeholders in respect of sustainable economic growth.