e-Newsletter IMPEL Network

Issue #1 - April 2014


In this issue:


A very warm welcome to IMPEL’s first e-newsletter! I’m delighted to introduce it as I believe it will play a really important part in communicating the great work that IMPEL is doing and keeping our members and partners up to date on what is happening. The Board has been very conscious that we should do more to improve the communication of IMPEL’s work and several initiatives are now undersway to do that. We have set up a new Communications Group and I would like to thank the enthusiastic team of volunteers that have come forward to make a contribution. I’m particularly pleased to announce that Nancy Isarin has joined the Secretariat. Many of you will know Nancy already for the excellent work she has been doing on behalf of the TFS Cluster. Nancy will work with Michael Nicholson on a range of different Secretariat functions and she will have special responsibility for supporting our communications programme. Many of you will have already been contacted by Nancy to give your views on what you want from IMPEL’s website.
Over the last few months we have been busy looking at the challenges and opportunities ahead and what changes IMPEL should make to ensure that it is fit for the future. There is a renewed focus in Europe on measures to strengthen the implementation of EU environmental law, and this is a central theme of the 7th Environment Action Programme. Building on our very successful Implementation Conference in Malta last year and the discussions at our General Assembly in Lithuania in December, a Task Group was set up to produce a proposal on how IMPEL can best contribute to closing the ‘implementation gap’ and what changes are needed in IMPEL’s governance and ways of working to ensure that we can make the greatest impact with the funding available. We look forward to discussing this proposal with the General Assembly at its next meeting in May.
Since I joined the IMPEL community over a year ago I am continually reminded of the dedication and professionalism of all the volunteers who contribute to our activities. I know from the feedback that I have received personally that IMPEL’s work is highly appreciated by our member organisations and our stakeholders, and is often cited in the international arena. I hope that this new newsletter will be read and enjoyed widely across Europe and beyond and that it will help to promote all the important work that IMPEL is doing.

John Seager
Chair of IMPEL


IMPEL Projects

Overview 2013

In 2013 25 projects were carried out, covering a wide range of topics and dealing with a variety of environmental legislative frameworks. As is laid down in the internal rules of IMPEL, the IMPEL General Assembly makes a final decision on the adoption and distribution of project reports, including whether it should appear on the IMPEL website or be made available on request to third parties. During the General Assembly meeting last December in Vilnius, Lithuania, the following project reports were adopted:
The remaining project reports will be submitted to the upcoming General Assembly, which will take place 7 and 8 May in Brussels, for adoption.

Outlook 2014

Each year we carry out a programme of work which includes different kinds of activities and interventions This year activities  include inspection and enforcement of transfrontier shipment of waste, regulation of waste management industrial emissions, compliance assessment, water and agriculture, and habitats and biodiversity.
Here is a summary of the projects that are running this year.

IMPEL Brochure

IMPEL Brochure

IMPEL recently published a brochure about the network, including its areas of work, the organisational structure and an overview of member organisations. It also provides some concrete examples of the benefits of participating in IMPEL's activities and experiences from inspecting and permitting officers.
If you would like a hardcopy of the brochure, please contact the IMPEL Secretariat.
Otherwise, you can download the IMPEL brochure here


IMPEL’s Work in the Fight Against Illegal Killing and Catching of Birds

In 2013 IMPEL started a project on eliminating the illegal killing and catching of birds. The overall objective of the project is to bring about improvements in compliance with EU legislation and to work towards the elimination illegal killing, trapping and trade of birds protected by the EU Birds Directive. Image 'Illegal killing of Birds Project'Awareness raising, exchange of practices and improvement of co-operation between enforcement experts are important tools in this project.
Read more about the project aims and the activities for 2014.

IMPEL in High Level Advisory Board of Initiative Tackling the Illegal Trade in E-waste

The European Union Framework Program 7 Security Research Project CWIT – Countering WEEE Illegal Trade – has been established to identify the policy, regulatory, procedural and technical gaps as observed in today’s business environment and to suggest tangible improvements for today’s situation. CWIT brings together a group of experts skilled in the fields of e-Waste analysis, crime analysis & supply chain security and database management. The project, led by INTERPOL, started in September 2013 and runs for 2 years.
Ms Katie Olley, project leader of the IMPEL TFS Enforcement Actions III project is represented in the high-level advisory board of the CWIT project, which had its first meeting last February. The two main topics discussed were 1. 'What are the real obstacles to tackle illegal trade of WEEE?' and 2. 'What can be changed to improve the situation, both in a long and short term perspective?' The next meeting is scheduled for June.
Click here for more information about the CWIT Project.

New guidance for water management and IED competent authorities

The  Integrated Pollution Prevention and Control (IPPC) Directive 2008/1/EC, now the Industrial Emmissions Directive (IED) 2010/75/EU, and Water Framework Directive 2000/60/EC are two of the most wide-reaching items of EU environmental law. They have presented many challenges to the Member States. Therefore, a series of IMPEL projects have been running since 2010 to investigate the relationship between both directives. The aim of phase 3 (2013) of the project was to develop guidance for water management authorities and for IED competent authorities on which attention to information should be put on and on the sharing of information in different phases of their water management cycles and regulatory cycles. The checklist for water management authorities is structured around the cycle of river basin planning:
  • Understanding significant water pressures
  • Establishing and implementing measures
  • Monitoring
Once the report and checklist have been adopted by the IMPEL General Assembly in May, both documents will be available on our website.

Database with rulings in criminal WSR cases

As part of IMPEL TFS' Prosecutors Project, an interactive database is currently being developed. This database will facilitate the exchange of relevant case law, prosecution information (such as the level of fines, working methods, prosecution approaches and interpretationmatters) and practical experiences related to prosecuting illegal shipments of waste. The exchange of information through the database will be of a non-operational nature. The prototype of the database was presented by Mr Rob de Rijck, project leader of the Prosecutors Project, at the Environmental Crime Meeting. A meeting which was co-organised by Eurojust and the European Network of Prosecutors for the Environment (ENPE) in November 2013.
IMPEL is viewing the possibilities to host the database on its new website that will likely be launched in the second half of this year.


Interview with ...

Enforcement Actions III Project

Image of inspector exchange between Germany and Slovenia (2010)Under the IMPEL TFS Enforcement Actions and Waste Sites projects; regular inspector exchanges are set up. Joint inspections and exchange programmes under the projects have been undertaken because Waste Shipments Regulation EC (No) 1013/2006 requires Member States to co-operate bilaterally or multilaterally in order to facilitate the prevention and detection of illegal shipments.
Katharina Aiblinger-Madersbacher, from the government of Lower Bavaria in Germany, participated in such an inspector exchange in October 2013 and March 2014.

1. What is your job?

"At the local government for Lower Bavaria (Germany), I am responsible for organising transboundary waste shipment inspections and for assessing transboundary shipments as waste or non-waste. I am also a project member of the Enforcement Actions Project and the Waste Sites Project."

2. Why did you participate in the inspector exchange programme?

"Since 2010 we intensified our inspection regime of waste shipments in our region. As a result, we have detected over 25 (suspected) illegal waste shipments in 2012 and 2013 with the destination being in Romania. In order to learn more about the situation in Romania and establish better contacts with the Romanian authorities, I opted to participate in an inspector exchange between Germany and Romania. For me it was very important to learn about the type of waste shipments inspections that were performed in Romania, to see how the waste in questions was actually treated and how the Romanian authorities classify between waste and non-waste. I was very interested to share views on how to come to a more uniform classification used goods and waste together with our Romanian colleagues."

3. How did participating in this exchange programme benefit your work?

"Participating in this exchange programme has benefited our work, because with respect to our most frequent illegal waste shipments to Romania (end of life vehicles, e-waste and waste textiles) we came to a common understanding on the classification of waste or non-waste. Furthermore we have intensified our contacts with the local authorities and with the Ministry in Romania. Lastly we realised that our inspections and repatriation procedures in our region had a very successful outcome, as many of the affected companies in Romania applied for a permit in the Romanian Counties and they implemented a notification procedure for transboundary shipments of waste."

Upcoming Events


28 - 29: Expert meeting 'Waste Sites' Project


7 - 8: 12th IMPEL General Assembly
9: IMPEL Board meeting
14 - 15: Best practice meeting 'Enforcement Actions' Project
19 - 20: Meeting of the Project ‘Nature Protection in Permitting and Inspection of Industrial Installations’
27: Preparatory meeting 'IRI Romania'


3 - 4: Project team meeting ‘Definition of risk analysis criteria’
11 - 13: IMPEL TFS Conference 2014
17 - 20: IRI Malta
26: Webinar Demonstrating the iDepend Tool

Message from the Secretariat


IMPEL is supported by a secretariat which is the backbone of the IMPEL network. The secretariat staff is made of a team of two officers: Michael Nicholson and Nancy Isarin.

Image Michael NicholsonMichael has overall responsibility for managing IMPEL’s Secretariat. Amongst his specific responsibilities are the financial management of the network; supporting the IMPEL Board and General Assembly, particularly the work of the Chair and Vice Chair, in guiding the strategic direction of the network; and is the main contact point for key external stakeholders like the European Commission.

Imaga Nancy IsarinNancy is responsible for both the internal and external communications of IMPEL. She leads the IMPEL Communication Group, which provides support to the project leaders of IMPEL projects in order to promote their work and project results. She also assists the cluster chairs of the two clusters of the IMPEL and organises the cluster annual meetings and conferences.



If you have any questions or requests for information please apply to the Secretariat.
You can contact the Secretariat by email or by phone:
E-mail: info@impel.eu
  • Phone: +44 20 3289 7442
  • Skype: impelsecretariat
  • Or follow us on Twitter.
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