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Pollution Prevention and Control Act 1999

Section 4

24.Section 4 applies to time limited disposal licences issued under Part I of the Control of Pollution Act 1974, whether converted into time limited waste management licences under Part II of the 1990 Act or having expired before they could be converted.

25.Section 4(1) to (3) provides that, where certain conditions are fulfilled, 1974 Act disposal licences authorising activities to be carried on in England and Wales which have expired are to be deemed not to have expired but to continue in force until revoked or surrendered under Part II of the 1990 Act. Similarly, section 4(4) provides that, where certain conditions are fulfilled, extant 1974 Act time limited disposal licences (including those authorising activities to be carried out in Scotland) shall be deemed to have become non-time limited licences which continue in force until revoked or surrendered. These provisions only apply to licences which have been relied upon within the 12 month period before the Act was passed (27th July 1999).

26.Where expired licences are revived, section 4 retrospectively validates things done in reliance upon the expired licence during the period between its expiry and revival. This means that the licence holder will not be subject to criminal prosecution for carrying out activities during this period without an extant licence and that third parties who transferred waste to the licence holder in the belief that the licence was still in force are protected. The section also validates the receipt of any fees paid to the Agencies under the licence and any variation notices, modification, revocation, suspension or transfer of a licence or acceptance of its surrender when it was not in force. These matters are set out in section 4(6) which contains an illustrative list of the effects of section 4(1) and (3).

27.Section 4(7) ensures that activities which were not criminal when they were carried out are not criminalised. Under section 4(9) the Environment Agencies are under a duty to notify licence holders affected by the section of the fact that the licence is affected and how it is affected.

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