What are solvents?
Organic solvents are used in many activities and industrial processes, these volatile organic compounds (VOCs) are air pollutants which can have negative impacts on human health and on the environment.
Legislation was introduced to limit VOC emissions and to combat these harmful effects. Regulation S.I. No. 565 of 2012 European Union (installations and Activities using organic solvent) Regulations 2012 obliges operators of installations using organic solvents to hold a current certificate of compliance from their local authority. This has replaced the Emissions of Volatile Organic Compounds Regulations (known as the Solvents Regulations, S.I. No. 543 of 2002) which were introduced in November 2002. Dry cleaners and other sectoral activities listed below come under the remit of these regulations:
· Adhesive coating
· Other coating (metal, plastic, textile, fabric, film, paper, wooden surfaces,leather)
· Coil coating
· Dry cleaning
· Footwear manufacture
· Manufacture of coating preparations, varnishes, inks, adhesives
· Manufacture of pharmaceutical products
· Rubber conversion
· Surface cleaning
· Vegetable oil and animal fat extraction and vegetable oil refining
· Winding wire coating
· Original vehicle coating and refinishing
· Wood impregnation
· Wood and plastic lamination
More information is available on the EPA website: http://www.epa.ie/air/airenforcement/solvents#d.en.42660
Certificate of Compliance
Operators such as dry cleaners and other sectors listed above must have an up to date certificate of compliance from the local authority in order to operate legally.
To obtain your certificate of compliance you must;
-register with your local authority
-maintain records on a continual basis to demonstrate that your facilities are operating in compliance with the annual solvent emissions limits. Please visit the EPA website for an example of good record keeping.
-demonstrate compliance by drawing up a solvent management plan
-get an inspection carried out by an approved assessor who has been appointed by the EPA.
The details of the panel of approved assessors are as follows:
Enviroguide Consulting-Phone 01 2711896
-the operator then submits the report of the approved assessor to Leitrim County Council together with an application fee. The application fee payable by operators to their local authority has increased from €50 to €70 for new applications but remains €50 for renewals.
-Leitrim County Council can now issue certificates of compliance for up to a 3 year period. However, certificates for a shorter duration will be issued if there are any concerns in relation to the application.
- the regulation provides for fines of up to €5000 on conviction
- a copy of your certificate of compliance must be displayed in a prominent position at your premises.
Dry cleaners- application form
The application form may be downloaded below:
Application - Solvent Regulations
If you have any queries in relation to the Solvent Regulations please contact the Environment Section, Leitrim County Council, Áras an Chontae, Carrick on Shannon, Co. Leitrim at 071 9620005.
For Further Information:
Best Practice Guidelines for Dry cleaning are available on the EPA website: