A set of amendments have been made to the Environmental Permit and License Regulation by the Regulation Amending the Environmental Permit and License Regulation (the “Regulation”), which has been published in the Official Gazette dated 16.10.2021 and numbered 31630. Within the scope of this newsletter of ours, the amendments made to the mentioned Regulation shall be examined. With the announcement of the Paris Climate Agreement in the Official Gazette dated 07.10.2021, the green transformation actions, which are expected to gain great momentum in our country, are integrated into the local legislation of our country and it has been aimed to comply with the green transformation with the legislation and regulation.
- Amendments Made
Within the scope of the amendments made, the scope of the definition of “Provincial directorate letter of conformity” stated in Article 4 with the “Definitions” heading of the Regulation has been expanded. The mentioned definition has been amended as; “it refers to a document that is issued over the e-permit system within two months at the latest as of the application and has a validity of one year as a result of the on-site inspection carried out by the Provincial Directorate, if it is determined that the physical conditions in the legislation to which the enterprises are subject are fulfilled and that there is a Zero Waste Basic Level Certificate or exemption, by taking into account the lists in the Zero Waste Regulation published in the Official Gazette dated 12.07.2019, a document that is issued over the e-permit system within two months at the latest as of the application and has a validity of one year.”. The mentioned amendment is a very important change in terms of complying with the obligations regulated under the Zero Waste Regulation in order to obtain the letter of conformity and regulating the fulfillment of the obligation to establish a zero-waste system as a condition. Since, with the “Regulation Amending the Zero Waste Regulation” published in the Official Gazette dated 09.10.2021 and numbered 31623, the list of enterprises responsible for establishing a zero-waste system has been expanded, and you may access our newsletter on such amendments herein. Another important amendment regarding such definition is that it has regulated that the letter of conformity will be valid for one year. Pursuant to the former definition in the Regulation, no validity period was stipulated for the aforementioned letter of conformity.
By revising paragraph 5 of Article 7 with the “Application to environmental permit or environmental permit and license” heading of the Regulation, enterprises that apply for environmental permit and license shall be notified by the competent authority electronically via the e-permit system, and there will be no need for a separate written notification.
Within the scope of the Regulation, in order for the enterprises to operate, the enterprises that have obtained the temporary activity certificate, which is a document provided prior to the environmental permit and license, must apply for an environmental permit and license within one hundred and eighty calendar days from such date. In case it is subsequently decided to issue an environmental permit and license to the enterprise, the mentioned environmental permits shall be valid for five years and an application for renewal shall have to be made at least one hundred and eighty days prior to the expiry of the validity period. With the amendment made, it has been regulated that an application for the renewal of the letters of conformity shall be made at least two months prior to the expiry of the five-year validity period of the permit.
With another amendment, it has been stated that the temporary activity certificate, environmental permit or environmental permit, and license documents and their annexes shall be issued electronically through the e-permit system.
Among the amendments made, a very significant amendment in terms of implementation is related to the renewal conditions of environmental permits and licenses due to the changes in the enterprises. In the conditions within the scope of the former text of the Regulation, the criteria were regulated to increase the total production capacity or total thermal power of the enterprise by at least 1/3 with the change of the address of the enterprise, the change of the field of activity of the enterprise, the change of the operating fuel and combustion system. Within the scope of the amendment, a condition has been laid down for the renewal of the environmental permit to increase the production capacity and waste consumption capacity of the enterprise by at least 1/3 or to have the amount of increase reach the values stated in ANNEX-1 of the Regulation. Changes in the waste consumption capacity of the enterprise within the scope of the former Regulation were not regulated as a reason for renewal.
The other amendment is; with regard to the changes in the total combustion/nominal heat power of the enterprise. Within the scope of the former text of the Regulation, an increase of at least 1/3 in these values required the renewal of the environmental permit and license. Within the scope of the amendment, it has been amended as follows; (i) provided that the amount of increase is included in the list in Annex-2 of the Regulation; the increase in the total combustion/nominal heat power of the enterprise by at least 1/3 and (ii) the inclusion of the amount of increase in the total combustion/nominal heat power of the enterprise, regardless of the ratio of 1/3, in the list in ANNEX-1.
In case of a change that requires the renewal of environmental permits and licenses before the amendment, the enterprises are required to make the renewal application within a maximum of ninety days within a calendar year as of the date of change with the documents specified separately in the Annex-3/C of the Regulation regarding environmental permits and licenses, along with the provincial directorate’s letter of conformity, work flow chart, and process summary, capacity report and the decision within the scope of the Environmental Impact Assessment Regulation.
Pursuant to the published amendments, the terms and conditions for enterprises to obtain a letter of conformity have been expanded and the scope of the changes of enterprises that require renewal of environmental and license permits of enterprises has been expanded. In addition to this, it has been stated that environmental permits and licenses shall be issued through the e-permit system and the notifications to be served to the enterprises shall be made through this system.