The UK Government released its much-anticipated Brexit White Paper document last week, providing assurances that the nation will remain a "leading actor" on climate change and environmental policy following its imminent departure from the European Union.
The document, titled ‘The United Kingdom’s exit from and new partnership with the European Union’ was published by the Department for Exiting the European Union, and sets out the government’s ‘vision’ ahead of negotiations to exit the EU.The White Paper seems to confirm that environmental measures that have been underpinned by existing EU legislation will continue to apply once the UK has left the EU. It states:
"The Government is committed to ensuring we become the first generation to leave the environment in a better state than we found it. We will use the Great Repeal Bill to bring the current framework of environmental regulation into UK and devolved law."
This will mean that existing targets and commitments set out in pieces of EU legislation such as the Waste Framework, Packaging and Packaging Waste or Landfill Directives will continue to apply at least until the Government has put in place alternative legislation to pursue a different course.