Legislative changes have been laid before the Norwegian parliament to make the country's pollution control act fully compatible with the EU's 1996 integrated pollution prevention and control (IPPC) directive, Norway's environment ministry announced on Friday. Norway is not a member of the EU but is implementing the rules because of its membership of the wider European Economic Area, a ministry spokesperson told ENDS Daily. Only minor changes were required of existing Norwegian industrial pollution controls, which have included for many years an integrated permitting system addressing all forms of pollution simultaneously, the ministry stressed. It said the main alteration was the addition to the national regulatory system of a requirement on firms to achieve high levels of energy efficiency. There would also be changes to the way that pollution incidents were dealt with, a spokesperson said. Environment minister Guro Fjellanger said in a statement that she hoped the new law would be approved before the summer recess. This would enable it to enter into force before the end of October, which is the deadline for EU countries to apply IPPC conditions to any new industrial installations (ENDS Daily 20 April).
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