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Expert Witness : Environment

Campaigners to challenge environmental costs cap removal

Two environmental charities – Friends of the Earth and the RSPB – and the environmental law firm ClientEarth have started legal proceedings against the Lord Chancellor and Secretary of State for Justice to challenge what they believe to be unlawful new costs rules for environmental cases.

The new rules, brought in on 28 February, weaken financial protection for people bringing a case, meaning they face unspecified legal costs in return for going to court to protect the environment.

A costs cap of £5,000 for claims brought by individuals and £10,000 for those brought by organisations and public bodies, introduced in 2013, has been lifted for environmental judicial reviews brought under the Aarhus Convention in England and Wales.

Last Updated on Wednesday, 26 April 2017 12:51

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Guidance on flood risk updated

Your Expert WitnessThe Law Society has issued a revised Flood Risk Practice Note to solicitors, reflecting increased concerns over homes and businesses in flood-prone areas. The practice note covers the issues and resources that solicitors need to be aware of when acting for buyers: from Environment Agency flood maps and specialist surveys to insurance.

The Environment Agency estimates that one in six homes in England – 5.2 million – are at risk from flooding. In Wales, more than 200,000 properties are at risk from sea or river flooding and 230,000 properties are at risk from surface water flooding.

In December last year, 16,000 properties were flooded in England following storms that hit over the Christmas period, as well as earlier in the month.

Last Updated on Thursday, 24 November 2016 10:51

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Get process plant design right from the start, urges Axion Consulting

Failure by process plant designers and investors to take into account fast-moving changes in the composition of waste infeed materials could cost them dearly in the long run should future disputes arise over performance and quality issues, warns Axion Consulting.

The Manchester-based resource recovery specialist says demand is rising for its engineering expert advice on recycling and waste processes in cases of industrial and commercial disputes.

Axion offers a range of Expert Witness, Due Diligence and Arbitration advice services in cases of industrial and commercial disputes. Issues covered for clients by Axion’s qualified and experienced engineers include litigation, arbitration and technical support for insurers and loss adjusters.

Last Updated on Thursday, 18 February 2016 12:29

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Impact Assessments provide a clearer picture

More and more members of the public are becoming aware of the use of Environmental Impact Assessments as part of the planning process - and even before the process begins, as campaigning tools by lobbies in favour or opposed to a development.

Nationally, the HS2 proposals have led to a raft of bodies - from wildlife groups and conservation charities to local authorities and business groups - submitting their own ideas on what the EIA should contain and what it should say.

Locally, proposals for the licensing of shale gas extraction have led to prolonged planning hearings and a great deal of emphasis on the environmental issues - put forward by those both for and against the process.

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Perfect Storm for Air Monitors

Following the Supreme Court’s recent judgement, the new Government will have to take urgent action to reduce urban pollution and to instigate monitoring regimes that are able to demonstrate success or failure of the new measures.

This has happened at an ideal time for Air Monitors, who have recently launched technology that is able to do so at a fraction of the cost of traditional monitors.

AQE 2015, the Air Quality and Emissions Show, provided Air Monitors with an ideal opportunity to demonstrate new lightweight, low-power air quality monitoring technology, at a time when political interest in air quality was showing signs of awakening from a deep disinterested slumber.

Immediately prior to the event, Air Monitors technology and staff had appeared on Sky News, helping to explain why 29,000 people die prematurely from air pollution in the UK every year.

Last Updated on Tuesday, 16 June 2015 12:45

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