Standards and legislation


Standards and legislation

image1In the Netherlands companies need to adhere to a wide array of legislative requirements. The main framework for the (environmental) rules applying to business activities is laid down in the General Environmental Protection Act (Wet algemene bepalingen omgevingsrecht or Wabo). Occupational health and safety is regulated primarily through the Working Conditions Act (Arbeidsomstandighedenbesluit) and the Buildings Decree 2012 (Bouwbesluit 2012) encompasses the primary building regulations.

Companies requiring permits for their activities can since 2010 apply for an “all-in-one Permit for Physical Aspects” (Omgevingsvergunning in Dutch). These permits encompass most activities with a spatial dimension, implying permissions surrounding Building, Environmental and Spatial Planning aspects are all bundled in one permit (for more information please visit this link).

For smaller companies, that execute (a combination of) more ‘standardised’ activities, the national government has developed the so called ‘Activities Decree’ (Activiteitenbesluit). Companies that fall under this decree do not need a permit, but are often still required to submit a notification to the local government including a detailed explanation of their business activities. These companies are required to adhere to all applicable standards laid down in the Activities Decree.

When applying for a permit or submitting an Activities Decree notification you may be required to deliver additional information, such as an acoustic (noise) report, a soil examination, flora and fauna study or an emissions calculation. BMD Advies Rijndelta B.V. (BMD) has a large network of specialised consultants and can hence fulfil all your needs surrounding specialised research.

There are also many more specific rules and regulations that are laid down in legislation that overlaps or ties into the broader frameworks described above. For example, if you employ staff in the Netherlands you are required to conduct a Health & Safety work risk Assessment (termed Risk Inventory and Evaluation or RI&E), which includes an evaluation of all the risks that your personnel may be subjected to in the workplace. Additionally, if you wish to execute activities with a high risk of explosion, you may have to set up an Explosion Protection Document (EPD). These are merely two examples of the wide variety of more specific research companies are sometimes required to conduct. Also for these more specialised reports, you are at the right address if you contact BMD.

We are always up-to-date with the latest developments surrounding legislation related to our specialisations and due to our close relationship with our clients we are quickly able to filter the data that is relevant for your organisation. Apart from providing concrete assistance (such as applying for the necessary permits); we can also facilitate contacts with the (local) government and assist you by doing internal inspections and formulating action plans to achieve your environmental impact reduction targets, as well as supporting you in all your other compliance management needs.

Our most important products relating to the legislative domain are:

  • All-in-one Permit for Physical Aspects, including for example:
    • Environmental permits;
    • (Minor) building permits or renovation permits;
    • Demolition notifications;
    • Permits regarding fire safety;
    • Construction of an entry or exit;
    • Tree felling;
    • Asbestos removal.
  • Permits related to the Water Act (for regulating discharges to water systems)
  • Notifications related to the Activities Decree
  • Coordination of specialised research:
    • Acoustic (noise) reports;
    • Soil quality assessment and soil remediation plans;
    • Exposure investigation (noise, fumes and hazardous substances);
    • Quantitative risk assessment (determining the risk of the use, handling, transport and storage of dangerous substances).
  • Setting up and maintaining a Register of Regulations
  • Health & Safety Risk Assessments (i.e. Risk Inventory and Evaluation - RI&E or Workplace Risk Assessment)
  • Task Risk Analysis (TRA)
  • Explosion Protection Documents (EPD)
  • Business Emergency Plans (Business Continuity and Disaster Preparedness Plans)
  • Products related to spatial planning:
    • Exemptions from the zoning plan (bestemmingsplanontheffing) for building permits that do not fit within the current guidelines
    • Quickscan of your development opportunities (evaluation of options based on an analysis of the local spatial plan)
    • ‘Spatial development alert service’ (monthly emails informing you on the upcoming developments in your area, related to spatial planning, building, etc.)

If you wish to acquire more detailed information on one of these subjects please contact us directly or refer to our Dutch standards and legislation page, which includes several more detailed attachments.

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