Scottish Environment Protection Agency


Scottish Environment Protection Agency

The Scottish Environment Protection Agency [http://www.sepa.org.uk (SEPA)] is a powerful non-departmental public body in Scotland sponsored by the Scottish Executive Environment and Rural Affairs Department. SEPA was established by the Environment Act 1995 and is responsible for the protection of the natural environment in Scotland. Its area of competence includes air, land, freshwater and marine environments (see Scottish waters).

Activities

Its staff of approximately 1400 is involved in a large number of activities, including:
*inspecting industrial sites
*monitoring river flows and heights
*taking and analysing ecological samples
*issuing permits to discharge into waters
*regulating waste management
*developing and running Scotland's flood warning system
*monitoring emissions to air
*overseeing the keeping and disposal of radioactive sources
*monitoring Scottish [http://www.sepa.org.uk/data/bathingwaters/index.htm bathing waters] .
*monitoring Scotland's coastal and estuarine waters

It also operates a 24 hour Pollution Report Line (0800 80 70 60) and the 24 hour Floodline (0845 988 1188), with [http://www.sepa.org.uk/flooding/warnings/index.aspx online flood warnings] .

Enforcement

SEPA regularly reports organisations which do not comply with environmental regulations to the Crown Office and Procurator Fiscal Service, which prosecutes all such cases in Scotland. Stirling Council was fined £7500 for leachate diffusing into the River Forth from a landfill site. Brian Roxburgh, local SEPA team leader said:

"The collection and treatment of liquid from landfill sites (leachate) is just one of the reasons that landfill is becoming an unsustainable way of waste disposal. Despite repeated discussions with Stirling Council, aimed at achieving a reduction in the leachate levels, routine sampling by SEPA identified ammonia levels persistently in excess of the limits imposed by SEPA. There is an environmental risk as landfill leachate can be highly polluting, so we impose strict controls on those discharging from landfills. While we recognise recent efforts made by the Council to address leachate problems, the site remains of concern to SEPA and we will continue to monitor it and take appropriate enforcement action where required." [http://sepa.org.uk/news/releases/view.asp?id=468&y=2006]

ee also

*Geography of Scotland
*Scottish Executive Environment and Rural Affairs Department
*Scottish Adjacent Waters Boundaries Order 1999
*COMAH regulations
*John Murray (oceanographer)

External links

* [http://www.sepa.org.uk Official website] , including Scottish environmental information, advice and contacts


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