The letter says that firms with surface treatment vats with a capacity of over 30m3 and associated with an LA-IPPC activity should have applied for a permit in July 2003. Only companies with such vats associated with an LAPPC activity, regulated for emissions to air only, have until July 2004 to apply.
The confusion apparently occurred because of an amendment to the PPC regulations this summer which transferred regulation of some surface treatment activities from Environment Agency to local authority control (ENDS Report 342, p 55 ).
DEFRA has asked the Galvanisers Association to advise firms which should have applied to contact their local authorities and "engage in the process of submitting an application as soon as possible." A spokesman for the Association said it was not aware whether any members had failed to apply.