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Energy Act 2013

Section 116: Minor and consequential amendments

498.Schedule 12, which subsection (1) of this section gives effect to, contains a number of minor and consequential amendments to various enactments. In addition, subsection (2) confers a power on the Secretary of State to, by order, make further consequential amendments to legislation in consequence of Part 3 of the Act.

499.Part 1 of the Schedule makes various amendments to the Health and Safety at Work etc. Act 1974 which are consequential on functions in respect of nuclear safety, nuclear site health and safety, security, safeguards and transport of radioactive materials being carried out in future by the ONR and not the Health and Safety Executive.

500.These amendments include, among others, amendments to section 18 of the Health and Safety at Work etc. Act 1974, to make ONR responsible for the enforcement of any of the relevant statutory provisions of that Act, in relation to GB nuclear sites (see paragraph 6 of Schedule 12) except where health and safety regulations provide for the Office of Rail Regulation to be responsible for enforcement. The amendments made by paragraph 6(3)(d) of Schedule 12 to section 18 ensure provision can be made for responsibility for enforcement to be assigned to either the ONR or the Office of Rail Regulation in cases of uncertainty. In addition, the amendments provide for the ONR to be made an enforcing authority by means of regulations made under that Act. This will allow the ONR to take responsibility for the enforcement of provisions of the 1974 Act at sites other than GB nuclear sites. These sites could include, for example, the non-licensed, defence-related nuclear sites where the interim ONR currently enforces certain statutory provisions of the 1974 Act as part of Health and Safety Executive, as well as sites which are intended to become nuclear sites.

501.The Schedule also makes amendments to Schedule 2 of the 1974 Act to enable the appointment of an ONR member of the Health and Safety Executive (see paragraph 15 of Schedule 12), just as paragraph 4(4) of Schedule 7 enables the Executive to appoint a member of the ONR.

502.Part 2 of the Schedule makes minor and consequential amendments to other legislation. Part 2 restates sections 1, 3 to 6 and 22 of the Nuclear Installations Act 1965, and in doing so incorporates changes to various nuclear safety functions of the Health and Safety Executive under those sections to the ONR. The replacement text restates the terms of the Act. In restating section 4, paragraph 19 does not replicate the offence of failing to display licence conditions on a nuclear site as is no longer considered appropriate.

503.Parts 3 and 4 of Schedule 12 confer functions on the ONR in the same manner, but in relation to Security and Safeguards respectively.

504.Part 5 of the Schedule amends primary legislation to ensure that the ONR’s functions are clearly defined from those of the Secretary of State or the Health and Safety Executive, particularly in respect of the ability of the ONR to be an enforcing authority under some health and safety legislation in Scotland and Wales. It also repeals the Radioactive Material (Road Transport) Act 1991, with the exception of section 1(1) (see paragraph 63(1) of Schedule 12). This is preserved because Section E5 of Part II of Schedule 5 to the Scotland Act 1998 uses the definition of ‘radioactive material’ in this provision.

505.In addition, paragraph 71 of Schedule 12 ensures that the power to repeal or revoke nuclear safety provisions in section 37 of the Deregulation and Contracting Out Act 1994 is preserved. This power can only be exercised following consultation with the ONR. Paragraph 81 of Schedule 12 confirms the ONR as a Category 2 responder under the Civil Contingencies Act 2004.

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