NRW set to implement new environmental regulatory charging scheme

A new charging scheme for some of Natural Resources Wales’ (NRW) permitting services will be implemented from 1 July 2023, the environment body confirmed today (23 June, 2023)

NRW consulted on its plans to update the charges for some of its permits and licences in October last year. It proposed to make changes to a number of charging schemes associated with applications for new and amended permits which would see charge payer’s pay for the full regulatory services they use. The ambition is to reduce the reliance on the taxpayer and create a scheme that works better for business and the environment.

The Minister for Climate Change, Julie James MS has approved the proposals and NRW will introduce the new and revised charges from 1 July in the following areas:

  • Industry regulation
  • Site based waste
  • Water quality
  • Water resources
  • Reservoir compliance
  • Introduction of species licencing charges
  • Changes to how we define and offer pre-application advice.

Annual subsistence increases across eight regulatory regimes, which primarily cover the fees for compliance monitoring, had previously been approved by the Minister and implemented on 1 April 2023.

Head of Regulation and Permitting at NRW, Nadia De Longhi said:

“Following the Minister’s approval of our proposals, we will now implement a regulatory charging scheme that is more closely linked to the actual cost of delivering these activities and to ensure charge-payers, not the public, bear the expense.
“We understand the financial impact our charging proposals might have on some businesses, especially given the wider cost of living pressures. Following a review of the feedback provided during our consultation, we have agreed several revisions to the proposed charging schemes.
“We want to recover all of the costs of our regulation so that we can reinvest resources in more compliance activity and in preventing pollution happening in the first place. The outcome should be a fairer and more transparent charging system which will result in more effective protection and improvement of our natural environment.”

Further information on the charging scheme will be available on our website from 3 July. Following the implementation of the new charges, NRW will also be providing applicants with new guidance and application forms for some of its permitting services.

You can view the consultation response here .