Options for Management of Environmental Space in the Rijnmond area
Verkenning Beheer Milieuruimte Rijnmond (Dutch only, English synopsis)
RIVM Report 2016-0116
The enactment of the Environment and Planning Act [Omgevingswet] extends the options to better manage the available space in the Netherlands. Not only the physical space, but also the 'environmental space' given the environmental limits for, in this study, air, noise and external safety. No policy has yet been devised for this. RIVM has taken stock of current practice, how improvements can be made and how this can be incorporated into the Environment and Planning Act. Lastly, an assessment has been carried out to determine what is necessary to achieve this in the so-called information houses of the Environment and Planning Act.
The recommendation is that a single consistent system should be developed to manage the used, permitted and still available space, with due regard for the maximum permissible values for air, noise and external safety. Such a system will enable more sensitive choices to be made about locations at which new economic activity can be permitted or how the quality of the living environment can be improved. This will help reduce the hazardous effects for people and the environment. Tailor-made solutions will still be required for complex situations.
With a view to creating a consistent system it is desirable to include the possibilities for better management of the environmental space in the implementation regulations of the Environment and Planning Act. To this end it is recommended that a duty to report be introduced for sources that, by their very existence, reduce the space for (economic) activities in the area in question. In all probability, a duty to report like this will most likely be substantially cheaper than the extra monitoring that would otherwise be necessary.
Another recommendation is that a pilot be executed for the Digital System for the Environment and Planning Act [Digitale Stelsel Omgevingswet] (DSO) to test the possibilities of a consistent environmental management system. To do this, the current assessment instruments for air, noise and external safety need to be updated and made mutually consistent.
Within the framework of implementing the Environment and Planning Act, the first steps are currently being taken to provide access to data on the living environment via the Digital System for the Environment and Planning Act. This is taking place via the information houses. This case study involved examining how the Rijnmond DCMR Environmental Protection Agency [Milieudienst Rijnmond DCMR] and the port authority are cooperating to ensure optimal use of the port area.