Europe And Africa EHS Service

Europe

The European continent goes from the Arctic Circle to the Mediterranean and from the Atlantic to the Ural mountains.  There are some 800 million Europeans of which nearly 500 million live in the European Union.   Of the nearly 50 European countries, 25 are member of the European Union.  It is not surprising that the European Union policy and legislation provides a common framework for many issues, amongst which environmental, health and safety issues.

The way chemicals are classified, how waste is defined, car exhaust restrictions, etc. are almost identical throughout the European Union.  But at the same time, when do you need an operating permit, what you need to do to get or keep it, is very different from country to country.  Most of the European countries have a complex set of unconsolidated EHS Regulations.  If you are in charge of ensuring EHS compliance for corporate operations or product management on the European continent, you will be facing one of the most difficult tasks.

In terms of enforcement no two countries are the same.  Only very few European countries have tough penalties for non-compliance (and even those are only a fraction of the fines imposed in North America), but the public authorities have other systems and tools to make private operators comply with the law.  With a bad reputation it may become very cumbersome to obtain a permit renewal and an order to halt production is not impossible.  Making the polluter pay is also increasingly popular.  Not to forget the increasing amount of data that are being made public, and a public that has it say in the permitting procedure.

Another feature which is typical of the European scene is the development of regulations focussed on products: Extended Producer Responsibility.  It starts with the packaging of the product that needs to meet certain essential requirements and shall not contain certain chemicals.  But also the product design itself is subject to environmental and safety design requirements, chemical restrictions, energy-efficiency requirements, etc.  When bringing the product to the market, it may need to be labelled and registered.  The distributor may need to be registered and submit an annual report.  And ultimately you may also need to take care of the product at end of life and ensure proper reuse and recycling for all the products you have put in the market. 

One of the things that makes it complex to operate in Europe, is the diversity of languages.  ENHESA has developed its services to accommodate all possible languages and regulatory systems.  We will help you understand what is required from you now and in the future, and what you need to do to ensure ongoing compliance.  Each company being different in its way of handling issues and regulatory compliance risk, Enhesa will help you identify what is the most appropriate system, given your particular circumstances.

Middle East

The countries in the Middle East are very diverse in their regulatory approaches and systems.  The petroleum exploration and the related industrial development have come at different moments and with different degrees of success.  The EHS regulatory complexity often reflects this.  Another issue to pay particular attention to is the scarcity of water resources.

Africa

The African continent has one of the greatest diversities in EHS Regulations.  In some countries the EHS legislative framework is almost non existent, while in other countries it is very well developed and enforced. Particular elements to keep in mind are the impact of armed conflicts and the infrastructure weakness in many regions.