The Emissions of Volatile Organic Compounds from Organic Solvents Regulations (referred to as the Solvents Regulations) were introduced in Ireland in November 2002, and were further underpinned by the European Union (Installations And Activities Using Organic Solvents) Regulations 2012. This legislation requires a large section of Irish business, which use solvents or solvent containing materials as part of their operation, to determine if the regulations apply to them, and if so, obtain a Certificate of Compliance. The following business sectors come under the remit of the regulations:
- Dry cleaning;
- Vehicle coating and vehicle refinishing;
- Coil coating;
- Winding wire coating;
- Other coating, including metal, plastic, textile, fabric, film, leather, wood, and paper surfaces;
- Wood impregnation;
- Footwear manufacture;
- Wood and plastic lamination;
- Adhesive coating;
- Rubber conversion;
- Vegetable oil and animal fat extraction and vegetable oil refining activities;
- Manufacturing of pharmaceutical products;
- Manufacturing of coating preparations, varnishes, inks and adhesives;
- Surface cleaning using compounds with risk phrases R45, R46, R49, R60, R61, or R40 and halogenated compounds;
- Other surface cleaning;
All solvent users must determine if the regulations apply to their specific operation. This depends on your business sector, and the type and amount of solvent you use in a year. At least 12 consecutive months of solvent purchase records are required to determine if the regulations apply to you. Should you exceed the annual solvent consumption threshold for your sector, your operation comes under the remit of the regulations, and you are required to achieve compliance.
Accredited Inspection Contractor
In order to attain compliance, an Accredited Inspection Contractor (AIC) must review your operation, and produce a report on the level of compliance with the regulations. This report will state if you are in compliance or otherwise with the regulations.
Certificate of Compliance
For new applicants, an AIC report demonstrating compliance with the regulations must be submitted to Meath County Council, together with the completed registration form and a fee of €70. On the basis of this documentation, Meath County Council will make a decision on the issue of a Certificate of Compliance for your operation. Failure to obtain a Certificate of Compliance may result in Meath County Council initiating enforcement proceedings under the Air Pollution Act 1987.
For companies which currently comply please note that it is advisable to arrange an AIC inspection well in advance of the expiry date of your certificate in order to carry out any remedial works which may be required to achieve a compliant AIC report.
If you have any queries in relation to the Solvent Regulations please contact the Environment Section, Meath County Council at 046-9097210.
Solvent Regulations - Registration of an Installation Form
The registration form may be downloaded below:
Further information on the Solvents Regulations and the use of solvents can be found on the following websites:
Department of the Environment website:
Enterprise Ireland website: