Federal Emission Control Act

    Germany

    Federal Emission Control Act

    The Federal Emission Control Act (‘the BImSchG’) regulates emissions and their effects on human beings and the environment.  

    Last Updated: July 30, 2019


  • Requirements

    Section 1 of the BImSchG notes that the same aims to ensure integrated prevention and control of any harmful effects on the environment caused by emissions to air, water and soil by securing the participation of the waste management sector, as well as ensuring protection and the taking of precautions against any hazards, significant disadvantages and significant nuisances caused in any other way. 

    In particular, the BImSchG regulates the construction and operation of installations, the production, marketing and importation of installations, fuels, substances and products made of the same substances, motor vehicles including their trailers, and of rail-borne vehicles, aircraft and watercraft as well as of floating units. In addition, the BImSchG regulates the construction of public roads as well as of railways, magnetic levitation trains and tramways. Please note that airports are not included within scope of the BImSchG.  

    Part II, chapter I, section 4 of the BImSchG addresses enterprise licencing. In particular, section 4 notes that non-commercial enterprises, except for waste disposal plant, unless likely to cause environmental damage, are not required to be licensed. In addition, mining operations which are not above ground do not require a licence, nor do open-pit mines.  

    The licencing procedure involves multiple stages. Firstly, the enterprise shall submit the licencing application in writing, with any drawings, explanations and other supporting documents required for verification purposes attached.  

    Where documents presented contain business secrets, such documents shall be marked accordingly and submitted separately. The contents thereof must be described in sufficient detail to enable third parties to assess whether and to what extent they may be affected by the installation in question in so far as this can be done without disclosing the secret.  

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