IED topper

New tool assesses potential exemptions from Europe’s Industrial Emissions Directive

Ricardo Energy & Environment and the English Environment Agency have produced an interactive tool that enables industrial facilities to develop and assess their case for possible exemptions from the EU Industrial Emissions Directive (IED) and its associated requirements

The tool has been developed under contract to England’s Environment Agency, which manages the process of determining whether an industrial facility should apply ‘best available techniques’ (BAT) to reduce its emissions or whether it is eligible for a derogation from IED requirements. In order to support this process, the new tool has been designed to reflect the methodology used by the Agency when assessing IED derogation cases.

Facilities that are first identified as having specific geographical, technical or environmental reasons for being unable to meet the requirements of the IED can input their data into the tool (including options for BAT) to explore whether these reasons mean their facility faces disproportionately higher costs than others. The results from the tool will form part of the case for a derogation, which will then be considered by the English Environment Agency.

Ben Grebot Technical Business Manager at Ricardo Energy & Environment said “This tool will make the IED derogations process more transparent, helping businesses understand whether they have a case to make for exemptions. It will also reduce the English Environment Agency’s regulatory workload, while enabling more consistent decisions and providing the evidence needed to justify derogations to the European Commission. The training we have provided the Agency on how to use the tool has been well received and we are now looking forward to providing similar support to industry.”

The new tool and supporting guidance is currently available to industry on request from the English Environment Agency. Further information on Ricardo Energy & Environment’s IED tool training sessions is available on its website:




The Industrial Emissions Directive (IED) has replaced the Integrated Pollution Prevention and Control Directive (IPPC) and six other Directives on industrial pollution control and was adopted by the European Commission in 2007. Industrial installations which carry out one or more of the activities listed in Annex I to the IED must ensure that no significant pollution is caused and best available techniques (BAT) are applied.

As England’s regulator, the Environment Agency may set less strict emission limits than indicated by BAT conclusions when applying BAT would lead to disproportionately higher costs compared to the environmental benefits. Any such derogation needs to be explained by the regulator and the conditions imposed justified.