Twenty new types of Irish businesses will have to seek licences under a system of integrated pollution control (IPC) for environmentally significant industrial and agricultural activities, Ireland's environment ministry announced today. Introduced in 1994 and run by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), the IPC system now covers just over 100 classes of activity, including today's addition of sectors such as large fossil fuel combustion plants and intensive pig rearing units. It was last expanded in spring 1997 (ENDS Daily 8 April 1997). To date, the EPA has received some 475 IPC applications, of which 314 have been granted, the agency told ENDS Daily. According to the environment ministry, up to 1,000 installations will eventually hold IPC licences. The government also announced today that it is to propose a new amendment of the IPC scheme next year in order to bring it into line with the EU's 1996 directive on integrated pollution prevention and control (IPPC). Ireland's system already complies with 90% of IPPC requirements, the EPA stresses, with the main change needed being some adjustments to size thresholds at which businesses in relevant sectors are required to seek an IPC licence.
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