EMAS registration numbers inch upwards

Officials blame poor national reporting for slow pace of growth in official figures for EU scheme

The number of industrial company sites registered under EMAS, the EU's environmental management standard, barely rose in the two months to the end of October, according to official figures compiled by the European Commission's EMAS Helpdesk in Brussels. Over the two-month period, registrations rose by only 33 sites across the 15 countries in which at least one company has joined the scheme, equivalent to just over a 1% increase (see table below). This compares with a 40% increase in registrations in the year to the end of August (ENDS Daily 20 September). However, officials claim that the apparent slow rate of progress is due more to patchy reporting by national competent bodies than a real slowdown in new registrations. While most countries report new registrations at least once a month, some - such as Germany - do so much less frequently. In Germany's case, in particular, this has a disproportionate effect on the overall figures since some 70% of all industrial EMAS registrations are in this country. EMAS helpdesk officials also stress that the figures do not include non-industrial sites, which are being registered by an increasing number of countries. These cannot be included in the official figures until the regulation underpinning the EMAS scheme is officially revised, which is expected to occur during next year. In the meantime, work is underway to produce an official parallel list of so-called "article 14" registered sites.
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EMAS-registered sites to 1 November 1999
            end August       end October
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Germany        1785             1786
Austria         185              200
Sweden          146              146
Denmark         108              110
UK               71               73
Norway           56               58  
Spain            37               42 
France           32               33
Finland          27               27
Netherlands      22               24
Italy            18               21
Belgium           9                9
Ireland           6                6
Luxembourg        1                1 
Greece            1                1
TOTAL          2504             2537
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Source: European Commission EMAS Helpdesk
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Follow Up:
European Commission EMAS helpdesk, tel: +32 2 511 2589, e-mail: emas@dg11.cec.be

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