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The Israeli Ministry of Environmental Protection Issues Guidelines for Permit and License Holders for Foreseeable Future

On March 18, 2020, the Israeli Ministry of Environmental Protection issued a set of guidelines for adjustments to businesses and factories with permits and licenses issued by it (toxin permits, emission permits, and business licenses with environmental conditions) for an “Emergency Period”. The Ministry’s working assumption in these guidelines  is that this period in manpower shall be reduced and business activity shall be fully or partially halted, will continue until July 1, 2020.


It was made clear in the guidelines that, inter alia, the Ministry intends to allow activity to continue based on existing permits, as much as possible. Additionally, routine periodic reporting deadlines have been postponed. The obligation to report unusual events stands and remains unchanged. In light of the anticipated reduction in manpower, supervisory activities shall focus on hazards and situations that create a significant risk to the environment. With regard to new regulatory demands, in cases where there are delays resulting from the unusual situation in the market, the Ministry will permit delays in performance. Of course, as a general rule, compliance with the terms of permits and licenses must continue.


Primary Guidelines to Holders of Toxin Permits:

  • Reasonable measures must be taken to minimize risks and ensure control over hazardous substances even during the activity reduction or halt.
  • Until a return to normal activity, toxin permits shall be renewed without advance inspection tours, assuming there is no significant change in the terms of the expiring permit, except for factories obligated to maintain “separation distances.”
  • Hazardous waste must be disposed of continuously in accordance with general or specific administrative permits.
  • Factories subject to “separation distances” shall strictly adhere to instructions on emergency teams or remote control systems, as relevant, as detailed in the set of guidelines.


Primary Guidelines to Holders of Emission Permits:

  • In cases of malfunction, planned shutdown, or emergency that cause or may cause a deviation in the standards of emission or air quality, or a failure to comply with the emission conditions, all steps and measures required to stop the deviation and comply with the terms of the permit must be taken.
  • The holder of an emission permit whose application date for renewal occurs during the Emergency Period, and who is unable to submit the application, may apply for renewal within three months after the end of the Emergency Period.
  • An emission permit that expires during the Emergency Period and whose application for renewal remains under consideration shall be automatically renewed for four months.
  • New applications and/or applications for revising an emission permit may be submitted online in accordance with the provisions of the law. Priority shall be given to applications concerning issues of adding or expanding facilities.
  • The directive to set up and operate air monitoring stations in the environment shall remain in effect without change during the Emergency Period.
  • In the absence of any other guideline or instruction, the holder of an emission permit must comply with its terms, including the obligation for sampling, monitoring, and reporting. However, the holder of an emission permit who is required to conduct periodic sampling under the provisions of the permit by July 1, 2020, shall be permitted to perform the sampling by September 1, 2020, except in regard to the requirements set in the administrative order under section 45 of the Clean Air Law 5768-2008.


Primary Guidelines to Holders of Business Licenses with Conditions Issued by the Ministry of Environmental Protection:

  • In cases of malfunction, planned shutdown, or emergency that cause or may cause a deviation or failure to comply with the terms of the license, all steps and measures required to end the pollution must be taken and a report will be delivered to the Ministry of Environmental Protection in accordance with the conditions of the license.
  • In cases of renewal of a business license with existing conditions, a one-year temporary permit shall be granted based on the existing conditions.
  • New business license – A business for which an approved uniform (published) standard specification exists shall be granted a one-year temporary permit. For a business that does not have such a specification, tests shall be performed to the extent possible, subject to manpower limitations, and conditions for the license shall be given.
  • Revising a license – Approval for a significant change that may cause risk or injury shall not be granted without individual inspection.
Tags: Coronavirus | Emission Permits | Environmental Protection | Toxin Permits