Comments are invited on a European Commission proposal to amend the European Directive Seveso II (96/82/EC) on the control of major-accident hazards involving dangerous substances. This Directive is implemented in the UK by the Control of major accident hazard regulations 1999. The Commission draft proposal and the result of the public consultation could be seen at 'http://ec.europa.eu/environment/seveso/legislation.htm'.
At this time the results of the Commission's deliberations on the revision of the proposal is not known, however HSE considers it useful to seek comments on the draft proposal since negotiations may proceed on the final adopted proposal very soon after its adoption by the European Commission in September 2001 and presentation to the European Council and European Parliament.
eight new specified carcinogens
to the existing list whilst increasing the qualifying quantities to 0.5 lower tier (LT) and 2 tonnes top tier (TT);
the qualifying quantities for substances and preparations dangerous to the environment, to
the definition of automotive petrol and other petroleum spirits to
"Gasolines, kerosenes, gasoils and petroleum products with similar boiling ranges"
whilst also reducing the qualifying quantities to 2000 (LT) and 5000 tonnes (TT);
a ten fold reduction in the qualifying quantities of explosives. [NB Following consultation the Commission has accepted the need to review its proposal on qualifying quantities];
the definitions and enlarge the scope of the Directive to explicitly cover storage and processing (including tailing ponds or dams) of minerals extracted from mines and quarries which involve qualifying quantities of dangerous substances.