Starting in 2017, the pollution controls applicable to
businesses in the 20 industries with the most significant
environmental impact will be gradually integrated to streamline the
licensing/approval systems, and the existing licenses and approvals
will be subject to periodic review by the Ministry of
On December 22, 2015, the Ministry of Environment promulgated
the Act on Integrated Control of Environmental Pollution-generating
Facilities (the "ICEPFA"), which integrates the
governmental licensing/approval systems for certain
pollution-generating facilities currently regulated by various
environmental laws such as the Clean Air Conservation Act. In
addition, under the ICEPFA, pollution-generating facilities will be
subject to license/approval reviews every five years, and may be
required to implement certain modifications to their pollution
prevention facilities depending on the results of the review. These
and other key provisions of the ICEPFA are summarized below.
1 Before applying for an integrated license/approval or a
modified license/approval, the company must first consult with the
Ministry of Environment regarding its plans for establishing
pollution emission facilities and/or pollution prevention
facilities (Article 5).
2 The facilities eligible for an integrated license/approval are
those that (i) emit at least 20 tons/year of air pollutants or (ii)
discharge at least 700㎥/day of industrial effluent (Article
3 When issuing an integrated license/approval or approving
modifications to an existing license/approval, the Ministry of
Environment may require separate emission standards (e.g., the
maximum level of permitted emissions) after consulting the relevant
central government agency, and the subject pollution emission
facilities will be required to comply with such standards (Articles
4 With respect to the licensed/approved facilities, the Ministry
of Environment will review the existing licensing/approval
conditions or the emission standards applicable to the facilities
every 5 years (in exceptional cases, 8 years), and be allowed to
make modifications to the licensing/approval conditions or emission
standards (Article 9).
5 Before a licensed/approved facility commences operation of its
emission facilities, it will need to report such commencement to
the Ministry of Environment(Article 12).
6 The Ministry of Environment is required to prepare and
implement the Best Available Techniques (BAT) economically and
technically feasible in designing, establishing, and operating
emission facilities, so that the emission of pollutants can be
minimized (Article 24).
The ICEPFA is scheduled to take effect on January 1, 2017.
Because the ICEPFA requires certain pollution-generating facilities
to be subject to the Ministry of Environment's review every 5
(or 8) years in order to have their licenses/approvals renewed,
such facilities, particularly those required to make modifications
to their pollution prevention facilities, could find the new law to
be quite burdensome.
Lee & Ko will continue to monitor any further
legislative/regulatory developments surrounding the ICEPFA,
including the adoption of implementing regulations, and will keep
you apprised accordingly. In the meantime, please feel free to let
us know if you have any questions regarding the ICEPFA.
The content of this article is intended to provide a general
guide to the subject matter. Specialist advice should be sought
about your specific circumstances.
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