In-House Environ­mental Protection

Licensing / Approval Procedures under Environmental Legislation

Licensing/permit procedures pursuant to the BImSchG, Wasserhaushaltsgesetz (German Federal Water Act - WHG), Betriebssicherheitsverordnung (Ordinance on Industrial Safety - BetrSichV) etc.

Environmental legislation means that production plants require not only a building permit, but also a licence under the Federal Immission Control Act, a licence under water legislation, a permit or assessment of fitness for purpose, a storage permit or an environmental impact assessment.

This means that a start may be made on constructing or altering a production plant only if a corresponding official "concession" has been granted. If this concession has not been granted at the time of commissioning, this may be deemed to be a case of illegal plant operation under section 324 of the StGB.

Projects often face tight schedules, however, and company resources for managing licences are limited. If licensing procedures are discussed publicly (public hearing) or unexpected difficulties arise in the dialogue with the authority, project delays are frequently pre-programmed. A declared aim is therefore often to speed up licensing procedures.

New plants or projects must therefore be examined, at an early stage, in terms of their licensing, permit or notification requirements. The project plan must then be examined in terms of its licensability, and advance discussions as to which requirements under environmental legislation (e.g. limit values, technical specifications, baseline report or chimney heights) are applicable and which documents need to be submitted with regard to the official approval process should be held with the authority. Clarification as to whether notification under immission control legislation is expected to suffice or a concentrated licensing procedure must be undergone as a simplified or formal procedure may still need to be sought. This requires, as a minimum, extensive and cross-media competencies as well as experience in communicating with authorities (application conference) as well as the creation of a project plan and its implementation within the set deadlines. This confronts company specialists (where such exist) with a major challenge, particularly as delays in schedule may lead to economic consequences or competitive disadvantages.
 
We also present a Best Practice Case with regard to this issue on our homepage.

Our services:

For more than four decades, our interdisciplinary team of experienced engineers, natural scientists, experts and lawyers has been assisting small and medium-sized enterprises in licensing and other approval procedures with regard to immission control, building, chemicals, nature conservation or water legislation. Our customers from virtually all industries benefit from efficient and target-oriented project work and extensive experience in speeding up licensing procedures. Our services include:

  • Examining projects in terms of their licensing requirement
  • Examining projects in terms of their licensability (implementation of relevant legal requirements)
  • Advance coordination of the procedure and the application documents with the authority
  • Preparing applications pursuant to sections 4, 8, 8a, 9, 16 of the BImSchG
  • Notifications pursuant to section 15 of the BImSchG
  • Preparing expert appraisals on noise, air pollutants, odours, minimum chimney heights, environmental and FFH impact, baseline report…
  • Coordinating other experts, assessors
  • Preparing and implementing scoping hearings, public hearings
  • Examining licensing decisions, objections
  • Providing assistance in implementing conditions, corollary provisions

Your contact persons in our offices

Kassel

Stefan Hüsemann
Telefon: +49 (0)561 96996-24
E-Mail: huesemann(at)bfu-ag.de

Halle

Eduard Münich
Telefon: +49 (0)345 686977-17
E-Mail: muenich(at)bfu-ag.de

Hamburg

Dr. Antonia Goldner
Telefon: +49 (0)40 30238698-3
E-Mail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Weinstadt

Hans-Ulrich Terme
Telefon: +49 (0)561 96996-14
E-Mail: terme(at)bfu-ag..de

Wetzlar

Stefan Bender
Telefon: +49 (0)6441 29-2515
E-Mail: bender(at)bfu-ag.de

Wuppertal

Axel Dreyer
Telefon: +49 (0)202 3171-3274
E-Mail: dreyer(at)bfu-ag.de

Expert Appraisals (Air Pollutants / Odours / Noise)

Expert Appraisals regarding environmental impacts in the residential neighbourhood

In the context of the licensing of industrial installations pursuant to BImSchG, the question of the extent to which the operation of installations can impact the indirect and direct neighbourhood arises more and more frequently nowadays. The particular focus here is on all kinds of emissions. These can be air pollutant emissions (e.g. arising from incineration processes), noise emissions (e.g. caused by the operation of noise-intensive fans or high traffic volumes due to operational reasons) as well as odour emissions (e.g. in foundries, food-processing or waste-processing plants), nitrogen depositions (from furnaces, power stations) or even light emissions. Neighbourhood complaints or official monitoring frequently raise the question whether the neighbourhood is sufficiently protected against hazards or disadvantages/nuisances.

In order to protect the neighbourhood against hazards, significant disadvantages or significant nuisance levels caused by all kinds of emissions or immissions, legislators have issued guide values in relevant sets of rules (TA Luft (German Technical Instructions on Air Quality Control), TA Lärm (German Technical Instructions on Noise Control), Geruchsimmissions-Richtlinie (Odour Immissions Guideline - GIRL)), which must be adhered to when operating the respective installations. This means that the emissions produced by the installation must be compared with the applicable immission values, which necessitates the use of measuring procedures and EDP-based dispersion models (e.g. AUSTAL) as well as the involvement of experts and assessors.

We have many years' experience in preparing and undertaking relevant expert appraisals on the respective emissions and immissions (dispersion calculations for air pollutants in accordance with TA Luft, noise immission forecasts/noise assessments in accordance with TA Lärm, dispersion calculations for odours in accordance with GIRL).

Our approach with regard to the relevant expert appraisals is based on the following project steps:

  • Examination of the prerequisites under environmental legislation, coordination with operator and authority in respect of the scope of the respective investigations/expert appraisal
  • Data acquisition, recording (e.g. plans, emissions data, emissions measuring values, weather statistics, digital terrain models)
  • Carrying out the required dispersion calculations (forecast models), evaluations and documentation (map presentation, reports, expert appraisals)
  • Discussion and coordination of the results with the client
  • Drawing up any necessary remediation measures, remediation plans
  • Assisting the operator in his communications with the authority

We prepare the following expert appraisals in the context of licensing procedures:

Your contact persons in our offices

Kassel

Stefan Hüsemann
Telefon: +49 (0)561 96996-24
E-Mail: huesemann(at)bfu-ag.de

Halle

Eduard Münich
Telefon: +49 (0)345 686977-17
E-Mail: muenich(at)bfu-ag.de

Hamburg

Dr. Antonia Goldner
Telefon: +49 (0)40 30238698-3
E-Mail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Weinstadt

Hans-Ulrich Terme
Telefon: +49 (0)561 96996-14
E-Mail: terme(at)bfu-ag..de

Wetzlar

Stefan Bender
Telefon: +49 (0)6441 29-2515
E-Mail: bender(at)bfu-ag.de

Wuppertal

Nils Ludwig
Telefon: +49 (0)202 3171-3272
E-Mail: ludwig(at)bfu-ag.de

Hazardous Incidents Ordinance (Störfallverordnung)

Protection against serious incidents - Seveso Directive and 12th Federal Immission Control Ordinance

The current Hazardous Incidents Ordinance (12th Federal Immission Control Ordinance) results from the so-called Seveso II Directive and aims to ensure the protection of humans and the environment against the consequences of such incidents.

In order to comply with the specifications of the Globally Harmonised System of Classification and Labelling of Chemicals (GHS) or the CLP Regulation, the Seveso II Directive has been revised. The Seveso III Directive, which is now applicable and has been brought into line with the GHS or CLP Regulation, requires several legal bases in Germany, including the 12th Federal Immission Control Ordinance and the Federal Immission Control Act, to be amended.

This has a significant impact, in part, on the continued operation of industrial plants in Germany, as a large number of the affected plants are located in mixed situations (close to sensitive usages). In addition to legal uncertainty, particularly in relation to planning legislation and necessary safety distances, there may be a risk of withdrawal of the operating licence. 

The most important amendments to the Seveso III Directive relate to the

  • adjustment of the scope of the Hazardous Incidents Ordinance,
  • provision of information to the public,
  • inspection standards,
  • mandatory introduction of a safety management system and
  • safety distances from protected objects

As a result of this, companies are advised, particularly in respect of the existence of dangerous substances and mixtures, to review classification as a potentially hazardous operation.

Classification as a potentially hazardous operation depends on the substances and mixtures present in the operating area as well as their maximum quantities. It must be borne in mind here that dangerous substances or mixtures that might only arise as a result of incidents also need to be taken into account. Wastes can also be substances relevant to hazardous incidents (cf. KAS (Commission on Process Safety) 25).

The operators of potentially hazardous plants are obliged to take safety precautions to prevent hazardous incidents from occurring from the outset, to immediately identify any hazardous incidents that arise and to act accordingly as well as to minimise their impact on humans and the environment as far as possible. Depending on the type and size of the substance quantities used in the plant, the obligations of potentially hazardous plants may be extensive.

Our services:

We will be pleased to assist you by way of the following services:

  • assessing whether your plant falls within the scope of the Hazardous Incidents Ordinance
  • determining your obligations pursuant to the Hazardous Incidents Ordinance
  • determining safety distances, protective distances
  • dispersion calculations
  • preparing a concept for preventing hazardous incidents (hazardous incident concept)
  • preparing the safety report
  • implementing and further developing the safety management system
  • preparing emergency plans

and in preparing any other required documentation.

Your contact persons in our offices

Kassel

Stefan Hüsemann
Telefon: +49 (0)561 96996-24
E-Mail: huesemann(at)bfu-ag.de

Halle

Eduard Münich
Telefon: +49 (0)345 686977-17
E-Mail: muenich(at)bfu-ag.de

Hamburg

Dr. Antonia Goldner
Telefon: +49 (0)40 30238698-3
E-Mail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Weinstadt

Hans-Ulrich Terme
Telefon: +49 (0)561 96996-14
E-Mail: terme(at)bfu-ag..de

Wetzlar

Stefan Bender
Telefon: +49 (0)6441 29-2515
E-Mail: bender(at)bfu-ag.de

Wuppertal

Axel Dreyer
Telefon: +49 (0)202 3171-3274
E-Mail: dreyer(at)bfu-ag.de

Chimney Height Calculations

Discharge of air pollutants and odours via flues and chimneys

Companies that discharge exhaust air from production processes or incineration plants and are subject to precautionary limit values under immission control legislation must construct state-of-the-art chimneys or flues for it. Checks need to be performed in licensing procedures or as part of official monitoring to determine whether the requirements on flue heights, exhaust air speeds, distances etc. laid down by immission control legislation have been taken into due consideration. Authorities therefore frequently request expert appraisals to be submitted.

The Technical Instructions on Air Quality Control (TA Luft) formulate requirements on conditions for discharging exhaust gases or exhaust air for installations subject to licensing (installations pursuant to Annex 1 of the 4th Federal Immission Control Ordinance). These requirements stipulate that exhaust gases must be discharged in a manner that guarantees they are dispersed by means of the free air flow. This is mainly achieved through a certain minimum chimney height. The 1st Federal Immission Control Ordinance BImSchV also lays down requirements on chimneys for small furnaces. Special requirements (13th and 17th Federal Immission Control Ordinance) are, of course, in place for large-scale furnaces and waste incineration plants.

Being able to provide the necessary evidence requires technical expertise, application of standards, EDP programs or the involvement of assessors. The assessor must take into account certain minimum requirements, pollutant-specific emission mass flow rates (Q/S values) and, under certain circumstances, the mathematical summary of individual sources/flues or uneven terrains. In doing so, he should also assist the operator in an advisory capacity so as to be able to mitigate requirements through appropriate measures, if required.

Our services:

  • Identifying minimum chimney heights in accordance with TA Luft
  • Preparing chimney height reports in the context of licensing and notification procedures pursuant to sections 15 and 16 of the Federal Immission Control Act
  • Calculating variants under different boundary conditions (e.g. chimney diameters, limit values, temperatures) and providing advice
  • Reviewing existing chimney construction heights and comparing them with the minimum chimney heights required by law in accordance with TA Luft, strategy consultation
  • Examining conditions imposed by authorities in licensing decisions in respect of minimum chimney heights

Your contact persons in our offices

Kassel

Stefan Hüsemann
Telefon: +49 (0)561 96996-24
E-Mail: huesemann(at)bfu-ag.de

Halle

Eduard Münich
Telefon: +49 (0)345 686977-17
E-Mail: muenich(at)bfu-ag.de

Hamburg

Dr. Antonia Goldner
Telefon: +49 (0)40 30238698-3
E-Mail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Weinstadt

Hans-Ulrich Terme
Telefon: +49 (0)561 96996-14
E-Mail: terme(at)bfu-ag..de

Wetzlar

Stefan Bender
Telefon: +49 (0)6441 29-2515
E-Mail: bender(at)bfu-ag.de

Wuppertal

Axel Dreyer
Telefon: +49 (0)202 3171-3274
E-Mail: dreyer(at)bfu-ag.de

German Solvent Ordinance (Lösemittelverordnung)

Handling solvents (VOCs)

Volatile organic compounds (VOCs) are often harmful to health and partly responsible for the creation of "summer smog". In 1999, therefore, the European Union adopted Directive 1999/13/EC (VOC Directive), which has since been transposed into the IE Directive and implemented, in Germany, by means of the Solvent Ordinance (31st Federal Immission Control Ordinance).

The German Solvent Ordinance covers numerous installations or activities, such as coating facilities/paint shops, printing works, paint and glue manufacturers or cleaning plants, and places extensive requirements, particularly in respect of substitution of raw materials, exhaust air purification or the use of reduction plans for limiting VOC content as well as in respect of the regular preparation of solvent management plans.

As even the regulations governing the scope of the German Solvent Ordinance are extremely complex, implementation alternatives are possible and the verification obligations (emissions measurements, solvent management plans) require time and expertise, operators often face a major challenge. 

Since the 31st Federal Immission Control Ordinance came into force, we have assisted numerous companies from a wide variety of industries in implementing the German Solvent Ordinance, always aiming to find an economically viable and legally compliant operating solution. We always first examine whether the scope of the Ordinance actually applies and, if so, whether exhaust air purification is actually required. We also assist our customers with communications with authorities, with licensing procedures (Licensing/approval procedures) under environmental legislation), with changes to the law (CertLex) and with the annual preparation of solvent management plans.

Our services:

Your contact persons in our offices

Kassel

Stefan Hüsemann
Telefon: +49 (0)561 96996-24
E-Mail: huesemann(at)bfu-ag.de

Halle

Marco Kühn
Telefon: +49 (0)345 686977-14
E-Mail: kuehn(at)bfu-ag.de

Hamburg

Dr. Antonia Goldner
Telefon: +49 (0)40 30238698-3
E-Mail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Weinstadt

Hans-Ulrich Terme
Telefon: +49 (0)561 96996-14
E-Mail: terme(at)bfu-ag..de

Wetzlar

Stefan Bender
Telefon: +49 (0)6441 29-2515
E-Mail: bender(at)bfu-ag.de

Wuppertal

Axel Dreyer
Telefon: +49 (0)202 3171-3274
E-Mail: dreyer(at)bfu-ag.de

EI/FFH Assessments, Intervention Provisions, Species Protection

Assessing whether plans and projects are compatible with nature conservation

Environmental impact and FFH assessments are an important part of environmental protection, as a project's possible consequences for the environment can be identified at an early stage and taken into account in any decision about the project.

Documents/ expert appraisals in respect of the environmental impact (Gesetz über die Umweltverträglichkeitsprüfung (Environmental Impact Assessment Act - UVPG)) or the FFH impact of plans and projects are required by the authorities as part of licensing procedures pursuant, say, to the Federal Immission Control Act. This requires the submission of meaningful documents. Specific features arise in relation to special species protection or in the event of interventions in natural surroundings and landscape.

The environmental impact assessment, which is laid down in the Environmental Impact Assessment Act, is integrated into the approval procedures for industrial installations as well as infrastructure and other projects. It describes how a project can affect protected entities such as human beings (including human health), animals, plants, biological diversity, soil, water, air, climate, landscape, as well as cultural goods.

In the context of an FFH assessment, new plans, projects and intentions that might significantly impair a Natura 2000 area (FFH and EU protected areas for birds) and its protection goals, are assessed in terms of their impact under Art. 6 of the FFH Directive or section 34 of the Bundesnaturschutzgesetz (German Federal Nature Conservation Act).

BfU AG, with its interdisciplinary team of advisers, initially assists its customers in determining the assessment and documentation obligations. The aim here is to present the need for the project and its environmental compatibility and to obviate any issues or fears that the neighbourhood or nature conservation associations may have. Overall, the planned deadline for the granting of the licence or project implementation should not be put at risk. A corresponding strategy and careful preparation, particularly in the case of public licensing procedures, are essential here.

Our services:

Your contact persons in our offices

Kassel

Stefan Hüsemann
Telefon: +49 (0)561 96996-24
E-Mail: huesemann(at)bfu-ag.de

Halle

Marco Kühn
Telefon: +49 (0)345 686977-14
E-Mail: kuehn(at)bfu-ag.de

Hamburg

Dr. Antonia Goldner
Telefon: +49 (0)40 30238698-3
E-Mail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Weinstadt

Hans-Ulrich Terme
Telefon: +49 (0)561 96996-14
E-Mail: terme(at)bfu-ag..de

Wetzlar

Stefan Bender
Telefon: +49 (0)6441 29-2515
E-Mail: bender(at)bfu-ag.de

Wuppertal

Nils Ludwig
Telefon: +49 (0)202 3171-3272
E-Mail: ludwig(at)bfu-ag.de

Baseline Report (AZB)

Obligation to return "IE installations" to their original state

Following implementation of the European Directive on industrial emissions (IED), new requirements are being placed on certain types of installation during operation and as part of licensing and alteration procedures. In the event of the construction of a new IE installation or major alterations to an existing one pursuant to section 16 of the Federal Immission Control Act, the baseline report (also referred to as soil status report) must be prepared for the environmental compartments of soil and groundwater and submitted to the licensing authority as part of the licensing procedure. The legal basis for preparing a baseline report is contained in section 10(1a) of the Federal Immission Control Act. All "IE installations", i.e. installations identified by an "E" in column d of Annex 1 of the 4th Federal Immission Control Ordinance, are affected by this provision. 

The status of groundwater and soil is determined in the context of the baseline report (AZB). The obligation to prepare the AZB applies only if relevant hazardous substances are used, created or released in the installation and there is a possibility of the groundwater and soil being polluted by these relevant hazardous substances. Following the subsequent closure of the installation, the BR is used as a yardstick of the obligation to remediate contamination that has occurred as a result of relevant hazardous substances. What is known as a "final status report" is prepared for this purpose after closure of the installation.

This means that specialist expertise in respect of the Federal Immission Control Act (Authorised experts / environmental verifiers) will initially need to be involved, and soil verifiers may subsequently need to be involved, in the licensing procedure (Licensing procedures).

Checks initially need to be performed to determine whether and in what quantities relevant hazardous substances are created, used or released (qualitative and quantitative assessment). The possibility of contamination of soil and groundwater by the relevant hazardous substances that need to be analysed in the AZB owing to their exceeding defined storage or throughput quantities must then be assessed. If the possibility of contamination by relevant hazardous substances can be excluded, no sampling or analysis of soil and groundwater needs to be carried out, which means that there is no obligation to restore the original status under the Federal Immission Control Act and no reporting obligation (baseline report). This is also set out in the guideline issued by the Joint Committee of the German Federal Government and the German Federal States on Soil and Water (Guide for the Baseline Report (AZB)), which has been supplemented by decrees in a number of federal states (e.g. NRW). In a further step, a technical investigation concept would need to be planned and implemented and the original status described as far as possible in quantitative terms (baseline report).

Our services:

Our services include:

  • Installation demarcation (BR only for IED installation, not the entire operation!)
  • Assessing the hazardousness and relevance of existing substances
  • Assessing the possibility of contamination
  • Case-by-case assessment, pursuant to VAwS, by our VAwS experts (VAwS Plus)
  • Relevance assessment report, coordination with authorities
  • Providing assistance with technical investigation concepts, selecting soil verifiers
  • Evaluating investigation results and preparing a baseline report

Your contact persons in our offices

Kassel

Stefan Hüsemann
Telefon: +49 (0)561 96996-24
E-Mail: huesemann(at)bfu-ag.de

Halle

Marco Kühn
Telefon: +49 (0)345 686977-14
E-Mail: kuehn(at)bfu-ag.de

Hamburg

Dr. Antonia Goldner
Telefon: +49 (0)40 30238698-3
E-Mail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Weinstadt

Hans-Ulrich Terme
Telefon: +49 (0)561 96996-14
E-Mail: terme(at)bfu-ag..de

Wetzlar

Stefan Bender
Telefon: +49 (0)6441 29-2515
E-Mail: bender(at)bfu-ag.de

Wuppertal

Nils Ludwig
Telefon: +49 (0)202 3171-3272
E-Mail: ludwig(at)bfu-ag.de

Hazardous Substances

Requirements on handling environmentally hazardous substances

Substances that, as "hazardous", fall within chemicals legislation, hazardous substances legislation, dangerous goods legislation, occupational safety legislation or water legislation are naturally being used in every manufacturing or processing plant. Numerous statutory regulations, which also change on a regular basis, thus affect the company, and it also needs to engage with various monitoring authorities. In-house tasks relate, for example, to hazard assessment, storage subject to licensing, prohibitions on substances, employee instruction, water protection, fire and explosion protection, hazardous incident legislation as well as special legal requirements for certain substance groups (e.g. solvents, coolants, toxic substances and substances hazardous to water).

In addition to the issue of hazardous substances within occupational safety, hazardous substances are also frequently relevant to the environment.

Hazardous substances, in general, are substances or mixtures with one or more hazard characteristics. At European level, chemicals legislation is regulated, in particular, by the REACH Regulation ((EC) No. 1907/2006) and the CLP Regulation ((EC) No. 1272/2008). Hazardous substances need to be allocated to hazard classes and categories according to the level of hazard that they pose and assigned label elements. The label elements include hazard pictogram, signal word, hazard indications (hazard statements) and safety indications (precautionary statements).

With regard to the handling of hazardous substances, numerous regulations from various areas of the law, such as the Gefahrstoffverordnung (Ordinance on Hazardous Substances - GefStoffV) need to be taken into account at national level.

The regulations in respect of the handling and storage of hazardous substances are also relevant with a view to ensuring legally certain operation. For example, the use of substances with certain hazard characteristics may give rise to requirements that are crucial in terms of whether installations require licences.

We will assist you with the identification and in-house implementation of legal requirements concerning the handling and storage of hazardous substances.

Our services:

Our services include:

Your contact persons in our offices

Kassel

Stefan Hüsemann
Telefon: +49 (0)561 96996-24
E-Mail: huesemann(at)bfu-ag.de

Halle

Dr. Kerstin Beiner
Telefon: +49 (0)345 686977-24
E-Mail: beiner(at)bfu-ag.de

Hamburg

Dr. Antonia Goldner
Telefon: +49 (0)40 30238698-3
E-Mail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Weinstadt

Hans-Ulrich Terme
Telefon: +49 (0)561 96996-14
E-Mail: terme(at)bfu-ag..de

Wetzlar

Stefan Bender
Telefon: +49 (0)6441 29-2515
E-Mail: bender(at)bfu-ag.de

Wuppertal

Nils Ludwig
Telefon: +49 (0)202 3171-3272
E-Mail: ludwig(at)bfu-ag.de

Waste Management

Obligations for waste producers

Pursuant to the Kreislaufwirtschaftsgesetz (Closed Substance Cycle and Waste Management Act - KrWG), the waste producer is initially responsible for implementing legal requirements, such as the classification of wastes in accordance with the Abfallverzeichnis-Verordnung (Waste Catalogue Ordinance - AVV) and final, environmentally friendly recovery/disposal. In addition to, in part, high disposal costs, recovery potential and sales proceeds are also emerging more and more frequently. However, the differentiation between waste, product and co-product preoccupies lawyers and courts again and again. There are also legal risks in terms of waste avoidance, waste treatment subject to licensing and waste storage. As the waste producer (consignor), you are also affected by requirements arising from dangerous goods legislation.

In addition to direct assignment of installations pursuant to the 4th Federal Immission Control Ordinance based on activity concerning the disposal and recovery of wastes (e.g. waste sorting facilities or composting facilities) or waste facilities that require only a building permit, wastes play a role in terms of the licensing requirement of installations insofar as legally compliant handling of wastes is one of the obligations incumbent upon an operator and hence represents a licensing prerequisite. Legally compliant handling within the meaning of the Federal Immission Control Act means avoiding wastes, recovering unavoidable wastes and disposing of non-recoverable wastes without impairing the welfare of the general public.

The question for those in charge in the company is therefore how to deal with the wastes arising and whether they may perhaps even be avoidable. Changes to the legal framework or switches in production require a regular review and adjustment of the approach to waste in an installation or plant. Apart from the objective of waste avoidance, the challenge remains to dispose of wastes in a flexible, efficient and cost-effective manner.

Our services:

We assist you in determining whether you require a licence or permit to store, recover or dispose of your wastes and how you can meet your obligations as an operator (particularly verification obligations) with regard to handling wastes. We will be pleased to offer you advice on waste avoidance strategies and the search for market opportunities. Our services include:

  • Licensing and permit procedures pursuant to the Federal Immission Control Act and waste legislation
  • Waste balances, concepts
  • Legal assessment of the definition of waste and of definitions like storage or treatment (assessment of the requirement for a licence)
  • Waste avoidance strategy
  • Market research for wastes
  • Appointment of waste officers

Your contact persons in our offices

Kassel

Stefan Hüsemann
Telefon: +49 (0)561 96996-24
E-Mail: huesemann(at)bfu-ag.de

Halle

Eduard Münich
Telefon: +49 (0)345 686977-17
E-Mail: muenich(at)bfu-ag.de

Hamburg

Dr. Antonia Goldner
Telefon: +49 (0)40 30238698-3
E-Mail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Weinstadt

Hans-Ulrich Terme
Telefon: +49 (0)561 96996-14
E-Mail: terme(at)bfu-ag..de

Wetzlar

Stefan Bender
Telefon: +49 (0)6441 29-2515
E-Mail: bender(at)bfu-ag.de

Wuppertal

Nils Ludwig
Telefon: +49 (0)202 3171-3272
E-Mail: ludwig(at)bfu-ag.de

Noise Measurements / Noise Register

Assessing noise - impact on the neighbourhood

Noise is an occupational safety issue and also a neighbourhood issue. Business growth or the advance of housing construction or nature conservation may result in far-reaching problems or even put the entire site at risk. At the very least, statements regarding installation noise or noise reports are required as part of licensing procedures under building legislation or immission control legislation.

Emissions from noise-intensive processes and activities are nowadays on the agenda in many industrial enterprises. The quantification of these noise emissions is gaining in importance in view of current discussions in respect of the potential danger to health posed by noise. Depending on the objective, it can be both useful and a legal requirement to measure noise directly at its origin (noise emissions) or to seek to measure noise in the neighbourhood of an installation (noise immissions).

In respect of compliance with noise immission guide values laid down by law, it may be advantageous, especially for industrial enterprises that have a number of potential noise sources, to describe and record their own noise emissions as precisely as possible in both quantitative and qualitative terms. In such cases, it is advisable to set up the most extensive noise register possible. This makes it possible, particularly through regular revision and continuation of the noise register, to identify potential main noise emitters and to minimise them, where applicable, through technical measures. This, in turn, can result in the company improving its contribution in respect of noise in the neighbourhood.

Our services:

BfU AG has many years' experience in measuring both noise emissions (noise measurements at machines or other noise sources, measurement of the interior level) and noise immissions (noise measurements at legally defined immission locations in the environment of the installation). BfU AG carries out the measurements in a legally compliant manner pursuant to TA Lärm and the relevant standards, evaluating and processing them on a customer-specific basis as a follow-up. In particular, we offer you the following support:

  • Identifying relevant noise sources and setting up a measurement plan
  • Measuring all relevant noise sources
  • Creating a noise register
  • Setting up a digital model using the CadnaA program and carrying out a detailed dispersion calculation (noise forecast) pursuant to TA Lärm
  • Preparing noise reports, sound reports

Your contact persons in our offices

Kassel

Stefan Hüsemann
Telefon: +49 (0)561 96996-24
E-Mail: huesemann(at)bfu-ag.de

Halle

Marco Kühn
Telefon: +49 (0)345 686977-14
E-Mail: kuehn(at)bfu-ag.de

Hamburg

Dr. Antonia Goldner
Telefon: +49 (0)40 30238698-3
E-Mail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Weinstadt

Hans-Ulrich Terme
Telefon: +49 (0)561 96996-14
E-Mail: terme(at)bfu-ag..de

Wetzlar

Stefan Bender
Telefon: +49 (0)6441 29-2515
E-Mail: bender(at)bfu-ag.de

Wuppertal

Nils Ludwig
Telefon: +49 (0)202 3171-3272
E-Mail: ludwig(at)bfu-ag.de

 

Raw Material Protection

Legal requirements on the raw materials industry

The raw materials industry, from coal to potash and salt production through to industrial minerals and the quarrying sector, is faced with ever new challenges in the form of both national and European regulations. New laws and ordinances require continual adaptation of production operation, management and business planning.

The raw materials industry as well as the downstream processing industries thus face new requirements in many fields of law, such as immission control, mining legislation, waste legislation, nature conservation legislation, water legislation etc. These have an effect on both licensing procedures and daily operations. The requirements also always have an impact on the business management of companies, e.g. in the form of capital expenditure costs incurred for replacement machinery in the area of exhaust air filter technology, treatment technology, dewatering technology etc. or in the form of provisions in the area of waste legislation and, not least, in the form of costs incurred as a result of implementing nature conservation compensatory measures.

Since 1976, Betreuungsgesellschaft für Umweltfragen Dr. Poppe AG has been providing its customers with support and advice in the above-mentioned thematic areas and beyond. In addition to handling projects, we also keep you informed about current issues of interest to customers.

Your contact persons in our offices

Kassel

Stefan Hüsemann
Telefon: +49 (0)561 96996-24
E-Mail: huesemann(at)bfu-ag.de

Halle

Eduard Münich
Telefon: +49 (0)345 686977-17
E-Mail: muenich(at)bfu-ag.de

Hamburg

Dr. Antonia Goldner
Telefon: +49 (0)40 30238698-3
E-Mail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Weinstadt

Hans-Ulrich Terme
Telefon: +49 (0)561 96996-14
E-Mail: terme(at)bfu-ag..de

Wetzlar

Stefan Bender
Telefon: +49 (0)6441 29-2515
E-Mail: bender(at)bfu-ag.de

Wuppertal

Axel Dreyer
Telefon: +49 (0)202 3171-3274
E-Mail: dreyer(at)bfu-ag.de

BVT / IED / TA Luft

State of the art as a legal yardstick for operating BImSchG installations

Operators of installations subject to licensing under the Federal Immission Control Act must always operate their installations in accordance with the state of the art (cf. section 5). The competent authority needs to issue corresponding orders or collateral provisions in relevant licensing procedures and as part of their monitoring. On the other hand, a state-of-the-art installation that does not cause any harmful environmental impacts must not be refused a licence under immission control legislation. However, there is only a partial definition of what "state of the art" is (cf. TA Luft, 31st Federal Immission Control Ordinance). Instead, certain criteria (cf. Annex 1 of the Federal Immission Control Act) and now also the European BAT reference documents and BAT conclusions.

The Federal Immission Control Act (BImSchG) requires that installations subject to licensing be operated according to the state of the art (in relation to the limitation of emissions to the air, water, soil, with regard to process safety and waste disposal as well as other environmental impacts). "State of the art", in the first instance, is an indeterminate legal concept, which is, however, fully verifiable in legal terms. More precise specifications are contained, in part, in the TA Luft and in various ordinances to the Federal Immission Control Act (e.g. emission limit values, chimney heights, operating modes). The granting of an operating licence under the Federal Immission Control Act is also conditional upon compliance with state-of-the-art technology.

Through the IVU Directive and currently through the IED/ IE Directive, the EU is, however, aiming not only to prescribe, but also to implement a uniform state of the art throughout the EU. To this end, BAT conclusions, which are issued from the well-known BAT reference documents by means of the comitology procedure, need to be transposed into national legislation. In addition, in the case of affected IE installations, the IE Directive also requires regular environmental inspections by the authorities, baseline reports and regular reports under section 31 of the Federal Immission Control Act.

In Germany, BAT conclusions are currently being implemented by cancelling the enforcement of relevant provisions in TA Luft so as to enable BAT conclusions and, to a limited extent, BAT reference documents to become directly binding (see also recommendations by the Federal Committee for Air Pollution Control (LAI) in this respect). The amendment of TA Luft is attempting to bring together the relevant provisions regarding the state of the art. Provisions on the energy efficiency of production facilities and provisions on business organisation (environmental management) are new in this regard. 

As far as the operator is concerned, this means that he constantly needs to check whether his existing installations are state of the art so as to ensure legally compliant operation. In the case of alterations to installations or new licences, the project needs to be planned so as to ensure licensability.

Our services:

We assist operators of installations subject to licensing in meeting environmental obligations and in communicating with the authorities, and provide support for projects from the planning stage to licence management through to legally certain operation. We offer you the following assistance, in particular:

We also present best practice with regard to this issue on our homepage.

Your contact persons in our offices

Kassel

Stefan Hüsemann
Telefon: +49 (0)561 96996-24
E-Mail: huesemann(at)bfu-ag.de

Halle

Marco Kühn
Telefon: +49 (0)345 686977-14
E-Mail: kuehn(at)bfu-ag.de

Hamburg

Dr. Antonia Goldner
Telefon: +49 (0)40 30238698-3
E-Mail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Weinstadt

Hans-Ulrich Terme
Telefon: +49 (0)561 96996-14
E-Mail: terme(at)bfu-ag..de

Wetzlar

Stefan Bender
Telefon: +49 (0)6441 29-2515
E-Mail: bender(at)bfu-ag.de

Wuppertal

Axel Dreyer
Telefon: +49 (0)202 3171-3274
E-Mail: dreyer(at)bfu-ag.de

Publication of the AwSV

The new federal regulation in respect of installations for handling substances hazardous to water

Up-to-date pointer: please note our events on this topic!

Requirements on storing and handling substances hazardous to water have previously been laid down in Länder-specific regulations thereon (VAwS). The requirements of the Länder-specific VAwS diverged in a number of points over the course of time, resulting in a wide variety of requirements applying to similar installations or installation types depending on the Land involved.

To standardize these Länder-specific requirements, a draft of the federal regulation in respect of the handling of substances hazardous to water, known as the AwSV, was prepared by the Federal Ministry for the Environment, Nature Conservation, Building and Nuclear Safety (BMUB) in 2012 and revised several times through to 2016.

The recent communication of the regulation text of the AwSV in the Federal Law Gazette on 21 April 2017 now requires that the AwSV enter into force on 1 August 2017, with the 16 Länder-specific regulations (VAwS) ceasing to be directly applicable. From this point in time onwards, the requirements of the AwSV must be complied with and implemented!

The AwSV introduces the following reforms, among others:

  • Partial change to the threshold values for determining the hazard level that results from the size of the installation in combination with the water hazard class (section 39 of the AwSV)
  • Introduction of a requirement to prepare installation documentation (register of installations) for all AwSV installations except for those that are part of an EMAS site in accordance with section 3 of the Wasserhaushaltsgesetz (Federal Water Act - WHG) [section 43 of the AwSV]
  • Introduction of particular requirements for biogas plants, geothermal probes and collectors, solar collectors and refrigeration plants (sections 35 ff. of the AwSV)
  • The previous requirements of the General Administrative Regulation for amending the Administrative Regulation on Substances Hazardous to Water (VwVwS), dated 27 July 2005, for self-classification of substances by the operator will be defined and described in the AwSV in future (Annex 1 of the AwSV). To prevent legal uncertainties, the VwVwS is to be repealed in a separate procedure (timing not yet known)
  • Introduction of particular requirements (e.g. retrofitting requirement for leak detectors) for liquid manure, slurry, and silage effluent installations (Annex 7 of the AwSV)

In addition, the AwSV defines transitional provisions according to which the requirements of the AwSV need to be implemented for existing installations.

Owing to the above-mentioned diversity of the currently applicable Länder-specific provisions for handling substances hazardous to water, it is not possible to provide a blanket assessment and presentation of the new provisions in the AwSV to be complied with. Our recognized experts for installations for handling substances hazardous to water are available to answer any questions that you may have in this respect and will be pleased to assist you with

  • examining and assessing existing installations in terms of their compliance with the relevant, currently applicable VAwS,
  • identifying the requirements of the AwSV to be implemented/relevant for existing installations,
  • preparing the required documentation (e.g. register of installations, operating instructions, monitoring, maintenance and emergency plans)
  • communicating with the authorities
  • implementing further operating activities in terms of water legislation.

Your contact persons in our offices

Kassel

Stefan Hüsemann
Telefon: +49 (0)561 96996-24
E-Mail: huesemann(at)bfu-ag.de

Halle

Marco Kühn
Telefon: +49 (0)345 686977-14
E-Mail: kuehn(at)bfu-ag.de

Hamburg

Dr. Antonia Goldner
Telefon: +49 (0)40 30238698-3
E-Mail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Weinstadt

Hans-Ulrich Terme
Telefon: +49 (0)561 96996-14
E-Mail: terme(at)bfu-ag..de

Wetzlar

Stefan Bender
Telefon: +49 (0)6441 29-2515
E-Mail: bender(at)bfu-ag.de

Wuppertal

Nils Ludwig
Telefon: +49 (0)202 3171-3272
E-Mail: ludwig(at)bfu-ag.de

Any further questions?

E-Mail: info(at)bfu-ag.de
Tel.: +49 (0)561 96996-0

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