The Environment Act 2021 

Everything you need to know about the Environment Act, which contains provisions intended to maintain environmental standards outside the EU, as well as improve air and water quality, tackle waste, increase recycling, halt the decline of species, and improve the natural environment.

Environmental Law

The Environment Act 2021: 45 things you need to know

The Environment Act 2021 has just become law. Photograph: Thorsten Nilson/Getty Images

After a long and tortuous journey through parliament, the government’s ‘world-leading’ Environment Bill has finally passed into law. The ENDS team has scoured the resulting legislation to bring you everything you need to know about the raft of changes that the new act will bring about... Read more


Environment Bill briefing

Numerous amendments have been made to the Environment Bill since it was first introduced. Photograph: Joe Daniel Price/Getty Images

Due to return in the next parliamentary session after its latest delay, it seems the Environment Bill will finally receive royal assent in the autumn. Since the bill was introduced, however, numerous amendments have been made and there remain a great many question marks surrounding key targets and the timetable for implementation, among other issues. Here's what you need to know... Read more

Latest news


Government ‘running scared’ of delivering absent environmental principles statement, says MP

DEFRA ministers must give an 'urgent response' as to why a key environmental governance mechanism of the Environment Act has not yet been finalised and laid before Parliament, despite consultation closing almost a year ago, a Green MP has told ENDS

Environmental Politics

Environmental targets consultation set to be extended due to absent evidence packs

DEFRA is thought to be planning an extension to the consultation on its draft environmental targets due to a significant delay in publishing crucial evidence packs, according to a note sent to stakeholders, seen by ENDS

Environmental Politics

OEP board member for Northern Ireland appointed

Northern Ireland has a new environment strategy and new representation on the board of the Office for Environmental Protection


‘An important milestone’: Green watchdog becomes legally established

The Office for Environmental Protection became legally established today, following last week’s passing of the Environment Act


Environmental Law

Queen’s Speech: What could be in it for the environment?


The Queen’s Speech, outlining the government’s legislative plans for the coming year, is due to be made on Tuesday. Here’s what ENDS expects to hear

Land, Ecology & Development

Will the Environment Act really 'bend the curve' on nature's decline?

The Environment Act sets a bold target to halt the decline of nature by 2030, but with a reliance on market forces and farming to make it happen, and warning of a skills crisis in the environmental sector, is it enough to turn the tide on ecological collapse? Tess Colley reports

Water pollution

Interview: Rebecca Pow on the great British sewage scandal

What the environment minister thinks about illegal river pollution, the Environment Agency's culpability and leaving water companies nowhere to hide

Editor's Pick

Parliament Brexit Hub

'Too much wriggle room', 'Absurd caveat' – MPs and peers set out their Environment Bill green lines

Under scrutiny: environment secretary Michael Gove’s draft Environment Bill has already led to concerns that protections will fall short of those offered by EU rules. Photograph: Ian Forsyth /Getty Images

As pre-legislative scrutiny of the draft Environment Bill gets under way, some MPs and peers have already set their own ‘green lines’. Where will the flashpoints arise?

Environmental Law

38 things you need to know about the Environment Bill

The Environment Bill sets out legally binding targets to improve the state of the natural world. Photograph: John Finney Photography/Getty Images

The landmark Environment Bill would make significant changes to laws relating to air quality, water resources, waste management, nature improvement and chemicals, and sets out how a new green watchdog would enforce environmental rules. Here’s what you need to know.

Find these articles useful?

Get more great articles like these straight to your inbox. Find out more about our weekly bulletins

Data & Insight

In depth content that helps you to understand implications, consider risk, implement and deliver best practice

Fines Monitor

Manage risk by keeping up to date with essential information on environmental financial penalties


Compliance Deadlines

Plan ahead with our Calendar feature highlighting upcoming compliance deadlines

Compliance Search

Discover all ENDS content in one place, including legislation summaries to keep up to date with compliance deadlines