Envireau Water is at the forefront of abstraction licensing in the UK, including being intimately involved with the developing New Authorisations process for gaining abstraction licences for previously-exempt activities and publishing a bulletin on the “Wholly and Mainly” issue in May 2018.
An abstraction licence is now required where dewatering removes wholly or mainly groundwater. Conversely, quarry dewatering, where gathered water is wholly or mainly incidental rain water, does not require an abstraction licence in many cases; for example where an excavation into impermeable clay strata causes ‘discrete’ rainwater to collect. Deciding whether or not a site meets this definition (and may/may not need a licence) remains a crucial first step; and the British Ceramic Confederation (BCC) appointed Envireau Water to help them develop guidance for their members on this important issue.
In order to provide clarity to companies on how to decide whether a site is pumping wholly or mainly rainwater, or not, Envireau Water developed an Water Abstraction Licensing ‘Assessment Protocol’. The protocol helps BCC members screen out those sites which fall into the wholly or mainly rainwater exemption and therefore do not need to apply for an abstraction licence. This will help ensure decisions are being made consistently and following a defensible approach. The protocol was developed in liaison with the Environment Agency, who support the final product.
If we can help you in determining whether a site is pumping wholly or mainly groundwater and in securing any necessary licences, get in touch on 01332 871 882.