Environmental protection

All Standard Notes
42 Documents
05.02.2015Shale gas and fracking
The regulatory regime for fracking in the UK is covered in this note along with comment on environmental concerns. It also covers the new access provisions and debate on fracking in during the Infrastructure Bill's passage through Parliament.
30.01.2015Flood insurance
This note outlines issues relating to flood insurance within the UK and the establishment of the Flood Re scheme by the Water Act and subsequent Regulations.
23.01.2015Infrastructure Bill: Energy and Climate Change measures
The Infrastrucutre Bill 2014-15 provides a number of new powers and regualtions that relate to energy and climate change. The note provides information on some of these for the Commons Report stage debate.
23.01.2015Infrastructure Bill: Invasive species
The Infrasctructure Bill 2014-15 contains new measures to control invasive non-native species. This paper provides an overview of debate on these parts of the Bill for the Commons' Report Stage.
22.12.2014Seabass fishing
Seabass - an important fish species for commercial fishermen and recreational anglers. This note addresses issues around seabass Minnimum Landing Size, stock management and current Government policy.
22.12.2014UK Fishing Quota Agreements for 2015
This House of Commons Library Standrad Note summarises the negotiations and decisions taken over UK fishing quota agreements for 2015 made under the reformed Common Fisheries Policy.
18.12.2014Septic tanks: new regulations
This note explains the legislation relating to septic tanks in England.
10.12.2014Green Belt
Government's policy on the green belt protection is set out in the National Planning Policy Framework. This note sets out concern about green belt protect and Government responses to these concerns. It gives links to further statistics on the size of the green belt.
01.12.2014The Forestry Commission and the sale of public forests in England
This note sets out information on the sale of public forests managed by the Forestry Commission
24.06.2014Green Investment Bank
The Government has announced the creation of a Green Investment Bank to stimulate investment in green technologie. This note includes details of its role and its location.
14.05.2014Carbon Price Floor
Details of the Carbon Floor Price and the Governemnts annoucnemnt to freeze prices until 2020
03.02.2014Anti-social Behaviour Crime and Policing Bill: Lords Amendments
This note gives background on Lords Amendments to the Anti-social Behaviour Crime and Policing Bill, which are due to be considered by the Commons on 4 February 2014.
09.12.2013Marine Conservation Zones in England
Marine Conservation Zones are being introduced to protect nationally important marine environments. 127 sites were put forward by regional stakeholder groups, and the Government has indicated that it may designate 31 sites in 2013. The Government may designate more MCZ in following years depending on the resources available. A final decision will be taken in autumn 2013.
14.08.2013CAP Reform 2014-2020: Reaching Agreement
Political agreement was reached on the major elements of the reform of the Common Agriculural Policy for 2014-2020 on 26 June 2013. This note sets out the main elements of the agreement with stakeholder comment. Some issues are still being discussed at European level following overall EU budget agreements and the flexibility of the reform deal means that key implmenentation decisions are to follow in the UK.
15.05.2013The Water Bill
The Government plans to introduce a Water Bill in this parliamentary session. It will probably focus on increasing competition in the water sector, and it will also aim to deliver other objectives including the provision of flood insurance, the better management of water supplies and more sustainable water abstraction.
13.02.2013Aviation: night flights
This note explains the rules on night flights at designated and non-designated airports.
05.02.2013Bin collection - Alternate weekly collection
Waste collection can be a contentious issue, particularly when local authorities decide to move away from weekly bin collection to alternate weekly collection (AWC). This note describes the reasons why authorities have chosen to do this, and related issues including the recently announced Weekly Collections Support Scheme.
21.12.2012Icy fishing: UK and Iceland fish stock disputes
In spite of generally excellent bilateral relations, Iceland and the UK have had a number of fisheries disputes. There are now increasing tensions between the two parties after Iceland started catching large quantities of mackerel. Iceland has been condemned for 'plundering' the stock and for threatening its long-term future. The stock is worth some 200 million to the UK economy. The dispute has become known as the Mackerel War.
22.11.2012Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative
This note summarises the main features of the extractive industries transparency initiative and outlines the sphere of operations of the UK's main mining companies. The note is prepared for the debate on 28 November 2012 on UK mining industries.
20.09.2012Deepwater and Arctic oil drilling
This note outlines several examples of how previously inaccessible sources of hydrocarbons are now starting to be exploited, the regulatory regimes that surround this and the increasing controversy over drilling in the Arctic.
23.07.2012The Antarctic Bill
This Private Member's Bill makes provision for expeditions in Antartica to have contingency plans to deal with environmental emergencies.
18.07.2012Antarctica: the treaty system and territorial claims
The unique treaty system that protects the Antarctic is constantly updated and sometimes challenged. A current Private Member's Bill would implement recent changes in the UK.
20.04.2012The Chagos Islanders
This note provides brief background about the situation of the Chagos Islanders, paying particular attention to the legal dispute over whether they have the right of return and the recent establishment of a Marine Protection Area around the British Indian Ocean Territory (with the exception of Diego Garcia). The note is not comprehensive in its coverage and will not be automatically updated.
16.03.2012Waste Water National Policy Statement
This note provides background information on the Waste Water National Policy Statement, which streamlines planning policy for nationally significant waste water treatment projects such as the Thames Tunnel.
05.03.2012The Rio+20 UN conference on sustainable development
From 20-22 June 2012 the UN will hold a conference on sustainable development in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, twenty years on from the 'Earth Summit' of 1992, also held in Rio. This note sets out the likely agenda for the conference and some surrounding political issues.
05.01.2012Durban Climate Conference
This note covers run up and outcome of the UN climate change conference that took place in Durban between 28 November and 11 December 2011.
30.11.2011Surface water drainage charge (rain tax)
This note introduces the debate surrounding the surface water drainage charge, or 'rain tax'. Following a change in legislation, water companies are now permitted to introduce surface water drainage charge concessionary rates for community groups.
13.07.2011Energy from waste and incineration
This note looks at the role of energy from waste and incineration.
17.03.2011Wreck Removal Convention Bill 2010-11
This note briefly describes the Wreck Removal Convention Bill 2010-11; a Private Members' Bill sponsored by Dr Th&eacuterèse Coffey MP. The Bill provides measures to enable the United Kingdom to ratify and implement the International Convention for the Removal of Wrecks. It would insert new sections and a Schedule into the Merchant Shipping Act 1995.
03.03.2011Illegally Logged Timber: EU and UK legislation
This note covers the EU ban on the import of illegal timber and proposals for UK legislation.
11.02.2011Aggregates levy
This note discusses the introduction of the aggregates levy and its impact on the quarrying sector.
12.01.2011Cancun Climate Conference
This note covers the climate negotiations which have taken place since the Copenhagen Conference (COP 15) in December 2009, in the lead up to the next meeting in Cancun in November 2010.
05.08.2010Fly tipping--the illegal dumping of waste
There are large environmental, social and financial impacts associated with fly tipping and the illegal dumping of waste. Local authorities, the Environment Agency and landowners spend more than £100 million every year tackling the consequences of fly tipping. This note gives a general overview of the extent of the problem of fly-tipping and the powers and responsibilities of the Environment Agency, local authorities and landowners to deal with it.
01.07.2010Marine litter: 'continents' of rubbish
A large amount of plastic is accumulating in large areas of the sea. These areas have been dubbed 'great garbage patches' or 'plastic continents'. The long term environmental impacts of marine plastic pollution are unknown. There are concerns that it may lead to chemical contaminants entering the food chain, although more research is required.
13.05.2010Public conveniences
This note sets out the law relating to the provision of public conveniences and the powers of local authorities.
10.05.2010Boiler scrappage scheme
The Government's boiler scrappage scheme closed to new applicants on 26 March 2010. Some energy companies operate a similar scheme beyond that date, but constituents are advised to obtain quotes from a range of sources, including local independent boiler fitters, to ascertain which provides the best value.
10.03.2010Dealing with nuisance trees and hedges
This note sets out the options available to homeowners to deal with nuisance trees and hedges. It includes details of high hedges legislation
07.01.2010Sources of historical statistics
Details of online sources of historical statistics across all subject areas other than the economy. These sources are either long-term time series or snapshots of a range of data from a specific point in the past.They allow comparisons between the present day and the start of data collection and any intervening period and give an understanding of patterns -have trends been smooth, random, cyclical etc? Snapshots cover a wider range of data and help us make more general comparisons between 'then' and 'now'. Most of the series go back to around the 1920s or earlier. . This note does not include links to economic data or anything to do with family history.
05.01.2010Sources of Social Statistics: Energy and Environment
Brief guide to online resources on these subjects
25.06.2009Greenhouse gas emission statistics
Updated to included final 2007 and provisional 2008 data, carbon budgets and the lastest projections
25.06.2009Cabin air quality
This note sets out issues and concerns about cabin air quality; specifically in relation to the unintentional release of chemicals into the cabin air supply, also known as "fume events".
28.08.2008Renewable Energy Statistics
Updated with 2007 data and 2020 targets.
All Research Papers
17 Documents
20.11.2013CAP reform 2014-2020: EU Agreement and Implementation in the UK and in Ireland
A new CAP refrorm package has been agreed for 2014-2020. This paper sets out the reactions and emerging implementation decisions of the four countries of the UK, and also of Ireland.
12.03.2013Energy Bill: Committee Stage Report
This paper complements Library Research Paper 12/79 on the Energy Bill 2012-13. It covers the Bill's Second Reading and Committee Stages. The Bill seeks to implement electricity market reform and introduces 'contracts for difference' to support all forms of low carbon generation, including nuclear. Government amendments made during Committee Stage related to cheaper energy tariffs and setting a decarbonisation target.
13.12.2012Energy Bill
The Energy Bill [Bill 100 of 2012-13] seeks to implement 'electricity market reform' and through this achieve 'secure, clean and affordable' electricity supplies. The Bill was introduced to the Commons on 29 November 2012 and will have its Second Reading debate on 19 December 2012. A draft Bill was subject to pre-legislative scrutiny by the Energy and Climate Change Select Committee.
30.10.2012Antarctic Bill
This Private Member's Bill makes provision for expeditions in Antarctica to have contingency plans to deal with environmental emergencies.
10.11.2010Sustainable Livestock Bill. Bill 5 of 2010-11 Public Bodies (Sustainable Food) Bill. Bill 12 of 2010-11
The Sustainable Livestock Bill aims to reduce the environmental impacts of livestock production in the UK. It also aims to amend the way agricultural subsidies are used to make them more environmentally friendly. It includes a duty to give consideration to supporting sustainable practices and consumption through public procurement of livestock produce. The Public Bodies (Sustainable Food) Bill would create a duty on the Secretary of State to prepare a Code for Sustainable Food to promote the procurement of healthy and sustainable food by public bodies. This could be made compulsory if uptake was not extensive enough.
16.06.2009Marine and Coastal Access Bill [HL]
The Bill covers a broad range of marine issues and would: (1) set up a new Marine Management Organisation (MMO) under which many of the existing, diverse areas of marine regulation would be centralised; (2) streamline the existing marine licensing system and provide powers to create a joined up marine planning policy; (3) introduce new measures to reform fisheries management; (4) provide a framework for establishing marine conservation zones; and, (5) enable the creation of a route around the English coast.
22.10.2008Climate Change Bill [HL]: Committee Stage Report
Climate Change Bill. (Bill 129 of 2007/08) House of Commons Library Research Paper 08/79.
06.06.2008Climate Change Bill [HL]
(Bill 97 of 2007-08)
24.04.2008Social Indicators
Social Indicators. [Includes articles on 'Gambling in New South Wales, Australia' and 'A new era for UK official statistics: the launch of the UK Statistics Authority, and Topical Subject Pages on world food prices, the weather in 2007 and excess winter mortality.] House of Commons Library Research Paper 08/37.
14.06.2007The Sustainable Communities Bill Committee Stage Report
25.04.2007Social Indicators
Social Indicators. [Includes article on Smoking in Public Places and The 2007 Census Test and a Topical Subject Page on Waste and Recycling] House of Commons Library Research Paper 07/38.
15.01.2007The Sustainable Communities Bill
23.01.2006Merchant Shipping (Pollution) Bill [HL]
02.06.2005Natural Environment and Rural Communities Bill (Bill 3 2005-06)
Natural Environment and Rural Communities Bill (Bill 3 2005-06). House of Commons Library Research Paper 05/39
04.01.2005Clean Neighbourhoods and Environment Bill (Bill 11 of 2004/05)
The Clean Neighbourhoods and Environment Bill (Bill 11 of 2004/05). House of Commons Library Research Paper 05/01.
10.10.2002Sustainable development and the 2002 World Summit
Sustainable development and the 2002 World Summit. House of Commons Library Research Paper 02/55.
24.06.1998Agriculture and the Environment
Agriculture and the Environment. House of Commons Library Research Paper 98/70.
All Select Committee Reports
22 Select Committee Reports
14.09.2011The impact of UK overseas aid on environmental protection and climate change adaptation and mitigation....
Government response. Environmental Audit Select Committee; Department for International Development report [Commons]
13.07.2011Joint Nature Conservation Committee and JNCC Support Co.
Joint Nature Conservation Committee report [Commons]
13.07.2011Green Investment Bank.
Government response. Environmental Audit Select Committee; Treasury report [Commons]
22.06.2011The impact of UK overseas aid on environmental protection and climate change adaptation and mitigation....
Environmental Audit Select Committee report [Commons]
18.05.2011Embedding sustainable development: the Government's response.
Government response. Environmental Audit Select Committee report [Commons]
03.03.2011Green Investment Bank.
Environmental Audit Select Committee report [Commons]
10.03.2010The National Forest.
Environment, Food and Rural Affairs Select Committee report [Commons]
07.01.2010The National Assembly for Wales (Legislative Competence) (Environment) Order 2009.
Government response. Office of the Secretary of State for Wales; Welsh Affairs Select Committee report [Commons]
08.12.2009Green jobs and skills.
Environmental Audit Select Committee report [Commons]
20.10.2009Greening government.
Government response. Office of Government Commerce; Environmental Audit Select Committee report [Commons]
14.10.2009Sites of special scientific interest.
Government response. Department for Business, Innovation and Skills; Science and Technology Select Committee report [Commons]
26.08.2009Carbon capture and storage (CCS).
Government response. Department of Energy and Climate Change report [Commons]
21.07.2009The National Assembly for Wales (Legislative Competence) (Environment) Order 2009.
Welsh Affairs Select Committee report [Commons]
20.07.2009Sites of special scientific interest.
Innovation, Universities, Science and Skills Select Committee report [Commons]
14.07.2009Greening government.
Environmental Audit Select Committee report [Commons]
14.07.2009Environmental labelling.
Government response. Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs; Environmental Audit Select Committee report [Commons]
17.06.2009DEFRA: Natural England's role in improving sites of special scientific interest.
Public Accounts Committee report [Commons]
02.06.2009Pre-Budget Report 2008: green fiscal policy in a recession.
Government response. Treasury; Environmental Audit Select Committee report [Commons]
10.03.2009Pre-Budget Report 2008: green fiscal policy in a recession.
Environmental Audit Select Committee report [Commons]
03.03.2009Environmental labelling.
Environmental Audit Select Committee report [Commons]
03.03.2009The Export Credits Guarantee Department and sustainable development.
Government response. Department for Business, Enterprise and Regulatory Reform; Environmental Audit Select Committee report [Commons]
16.12.2008Vehicle excise duty as an environmental tax.
Government response. Treasury; Environmental Audit Select Committee report [Commons]