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6 1987

AIR POLLUTION ACT, 1987

PART V

Air Quality Management Plans and Standards

Air quality management plans.

46. —(1) A local authority may, and shall if the Minister so directs, make, in relation to all or any part of their functional area, a plan (in this Act referred to as an “air quality management plan”) for the preservation or the improvement of the air quality in the area to which such plan relates.

(2) A local authority may, from time to time as occasion demands, and shall at least once in every five years after the date of the making of an air quality management plan, review the plan and make in it any variations (whether by way of alteration, addition or deletion) which they consider proper or replace it by a new plan.

(3) Two or more local authorities may, in relation to all or any part of their functional areas, jointly make an air quality management plan and the provisions of subsection (2) shall apply to any such plan.

(4) An air quality management plan shall contain such objectives as seem to the local authority concerned to be reasonable and necessary for the prevention or limitation of air pollution or the preservation or improvement of air quality in the area to which such plan relates but shall not contain any objective which would be inconsistent with any regulations made under sections 50 or 51 or with any special control area order in operation in relation to such area.

(5) The making, review, variation or replacement of an air quality management plan shall be a reserved function.

Power of Minister in relation to an air quality management plan.

47. —The Minister may—

(a) direct a local authority, or two or more local authorities jointly, to make an air quality management plan;

(b) require a local authority or, as the case may be, two or more local authorities, to vary (whether by alteration, addition or deletion) an air quality management plan made or jointly made by them in such manner as the Minister may specify or to replace the plan by a new plan;

(c) require that an air quality management plan made or to be made by two or more local authorities be co-ordinated in such manner and in relation to such matters as the Minister may specify;

and a local authority shall comply with every such direction or requisition of the Minister.

Publication of notices in relation to air quality management plans.

48. —(1) Where a local authority propose to make, vary or replace an air quality management plan, the local authority shall cause to be published in at least one newspaper circulating in their functional area a notice of the proposal, as the case may be, to make, vary or replace the plan.

(2) A notice under subsection (1) shall state that—

(a) a copy of the proposed plan or, as the case may be, of the variation to the plan may be inspected at a stated place and at stated times during a stated period;

(b) representations in relation to the proposed plan or to the proposed variation of the plan made to the local authority within the stated period will be taken into consideration before the making of the plan or, as the case may be, the variation of the plan (and any such representations shall be taken into consideration accordingly).

(3) When the local authority have considered any representations duly made to them within the period stated in the notice under subsection (2), the local authority may, as they think fit, make, vary or replace the plan with or without amendment.

(4) (a) Any person may request a local authority for a copy, or extract, of an air quality management plan and the local authority shall comply with such request.

(b) A document purporting to be a copy of an air quality management plan or to be an extract from such plan and to be certified by an officer of a local authority as a true copy shall be prima facie evidence of the plan or extract, as the case may be, and it shall not be necessary to prove the signature of such officer or that he was in fact such officer.

(c) Evidence of an air quality management plan or of an extract from such plan may be given by production of a copy thereof certified pursuant to this subsection and it shall not be necessary to produce the plan itself.

(d) Where a request is made to a local authority for a copy under this subsection, the copy shall be issued to the applicant on payment by him to the local authority of such fee (if any) as they shall fix not exceeding the reasonable cost of making the copy.

Duty of local authority on making, varying or replacing an air quality management plan.

49. —As soon as may be after a local authority have made, varied or replaced an air quality management plan, the local authority shall transmit a copy of the plan or the new plan, as the case may be, to the Minister and to such other persons as may be prescribed.

Air quality standards.

50. —(1) The Minister may, for the purposes of this Act, by regulations specify standards (in this Act referred to as “air quality standards”) and different air quality standards may be specified for different areas or classes of areas, different circumstances or classes of circumstances or for different periods of time.

(2) Without prejudice to the provisions of subsection (1), regulations under this section may make provision for all or any of the following matters—

(a) relate an air quality standard to a particular pollutant or to a combination of pollutants;

(b) express an air quality standard as a concentration in the air, or as a mass depositing on a specified area, of the particular pollutant or combination of pollutants which is not to be exceeded for specified periods and under specified conditions;

(c) provide that the Minister may suspend, relax or modify an air quality standard for such period and in such circumstances as may be specified either generally or in relation to a particular area.

(3) Where it appears as a result of monitoring carried out under section 54 , or otherwise, that an air quality standard is being, or is likely to be, exceeded in any part of their functional area, a local authority shall—

(a) include in any air quality management plan prepared by them such objectives as the local authority consider appropriate for the improvement of the quality of the air and for the prevention or limitation of air pollution in the affected area so that within such period as the local authority consider reasonable, or such period as the Minister may direct, the air quality standard will not be exceeded, and

(b) take such other steps as may be appropriate in discharge of their functions under this Act to secure compliance with the air quality standard.

Emission limit values.

51. —(1) The Minister may, for the purposes of this Act, by regulations specify limits (in this Act referred to as “emission limit values”) for emissions and different emission limit values may be specified for different areas or classes of areas, different premises or classes of premises, different circumstances or classes of circumstances or for different periods of time.

(2) An emission limit value may relate to a particular pollutant or to a combination of pollutants.

(3) Where a relevant emission limit value is specified in regulations under this section, the occupier of any premises from which the pollutant or, as the case may be, the combination of pollutants, is emitted into the atmosphere shall take such steps as may be necessary to ensure that such emissions do not exceed the emission limit value concerned.

(4) The Minister may give directions to a local authority in relation to the sampling, analysis and measurement methods to be used in determining whether emissions of any pollutant or combination of pollutants comply with an emission limit value specified in relation to that pollutant or combination of pollutants and it shall be the duty of the local authority concerned to comply with any such directions.

(5) Regulations under this section may provide that the Minister may suspend, relax or modify an emission limit value for such period and in such circumstances as may be specified either generally or in relation to premises of a particular class or in relation to a particular area.

Directions by Minister in relation to air pollution.

52. —(1) The Minister shall, from time to time as occasion demands, issue such general directions as to policy in relation to the prevention and limitation of air pollution as he considers necessary.

(2) In performing their functions under this Act, a local authority and An Bord Pleanála shall have regard to any directions issued by the Minister under this section.

(3) Whenever the Minister gives a direction under this section, he shall—

(a) cause a copy of the direction to be transmitted to each local authority and to An Bord Pleanála,

(b) cause to be published in Iris Oifigiúil a notice of the issue of the direction.

(4) Whenever the Minister causes a notice to be published pursuant to subsection (3) (b), such notice shall specify where a copy of the direction to which it relates may be obtained and the fee (if any) payable in respect of such copy.

Regulations in relation to fuel.

53. —(1) The Minister, for the purpose of preventing or limiting air pollution, may make regulations in relation to—

(a) the standard, specification, composition and contents of any fuel of a type which is used in mechanically propelled vehicles or in mechanically propelled vehicles of a particular class or description or mechanically propelled vehicles in a particular area or a particular class of areas;

(b) the standard, specification, composition and contents of any type of fuel which is burnt in fireplaces or in fireplaces of a particular class or description or in fireplaces in a particular area or particular class of areas;

(c) the production, treatment, importation, placing on the market, distribution or sale of fuel of any type or description;

(d) the burning, or the prohibition of burning, in fireplaces, or in fireplaces of a particular class or description of a fuel, or of a fuel which does not comply with such requirements as may be specified;

(e) the use, or the prohibition of the use, in mechanically propelled vehicles, or in mechanically propelled vehicles of a particular class or description of a fuel, or of a fuel which does not comply with such requirements as may be specified.

(2) Without prejudice to the generality of subsection (1), regulations under this section may—

(a) prohibit the sale, distribution, use or burning of a fuel which does not conform with such standards as may be specified either generally or in a specified area or class of areas;

(b) specify different standards in relation to different fuels;

(c) specify the tests which shall be conducted to establish whether a fuel complies with the provisions of regulations made under this section;

(d) provide for exemption in such circumstances or in such cases as may be specified from all or any of the provisions of the regulations;

(e) require that specified information in relation to fuels be displayed at such places and in such a manner as may be specified;

(f) provide for the enforcement of the regulations (or of any provision thereof) by persons specified in the regulations and provide for the powers of such persons and any person authorised by such persons;

(g) provide for the issue of certificates by such persons as may be specified;

(h) provide for the keeping of records by specified persons and for the examination of such records;

(i) provide for the examination of such premises, records and vehicles as may be specified and for the requirements that may be made of the owner or other person in charge of premises, records or vehicles so specified for the purpose of such examination;

(j) provide for the taking of samples of fuels at specified premises or from specified vehicles;

(k) provide for the colouring of different fuels to be used in different mechanically propelled vehicles or classes of mechanically propelled vehicles;

(l) provide that any certificate or other evidence given or to be given in respect of any test, examination or analysis of any sample taken or conducted pursuant to the regulations shall be evidence, without further proof, of the result of the test, examination or analysis, until the contrary is shown.