In the final stage of BAT4MED project, a policy brief for the three MPCs has been developed. It aims to provide practical policy recommendations and guidance, comprising a concise summary of how government policies can best support the implementation of BATs in each country and approach the EU Integrated Pollution Prevention and Control (IPPC) scheme.
The envisioned policy convergence refers specifically to the EU IPPC Directive adopted by the European Commission in 1996. This Directive was codified in 2008 and it has been recently succeeded by the EU Directive on Industrial Emissions (IED Directive 2010/75/EU).
Following national policy analyses and cross-country analysis implemented in the BAT4MED project, this policy brief concludes with a summary of the problem, policy context, options and comparison of options with regards to their various impacts over the medium term (5 years), and finally, policy recommendations.
Policy options were assessed through formulating three scenarios of policy intervention approaches: Gradual Transposition Scenario (similar to the process of EU member states and accession countries), Voluntary Action Incentives Scenario (which differ by focusing on creating the enabling environment to promote voluntary measures by industries), and Business-As-Usual with which the impact of the first two action-scenarios are compared, and which assumes continuation of the status quo. The relative situations of the three MPCs were quite similar and therefore combined in a single policy brief.
The recommended policies suggest that the Voluntary Action Incentives scenario would be most favourable. The recommendation is that a gradual approach toward adoption of favorable/tailored elements the IPPC scheme in a manner that incentivizes and enables voluntary action rather than introducing additional legally binding or costly requirements to the industry or requiring substantial institutional and administrative capacity. The enabling environment to induce these (predominantly) voluntary actions by the industry includes BAT guidance (with focus on the identified priority sectors), financial incentives (including leveraging international cooperation opportunities), capacity building, and improvement of information availability and exchange.
These mentioned four key measures create the enabling environment to carry out a simplified step-by-step approach toward policy convergence with the favourable elements of the EU IPPC scheme and adoption of BATs building on BAT4MED project outcomes. The steps are enlisted as follows:
- Step-1: Identify priority sectors based on Environmental Benefit Potential (EBP).
- Step-2: Establish a simplified integrated permit requirement.
- Step-3: Maintain minimum standard requirements on which to base the permit in accordance with the existing standards.
- Step-4: Use Best Available Techniques (BAT) as a basis for permits to be issued.
- Step-5: Ensure periodic publication of emission levels.
Guidance from the BAT4MED project outcomes to support this process is finally noted.