It describes the views of the Secretary of State for the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra) and the Welsh Ministers on how the European Directives and other legislation relating to water discharge activities should be applied and how particular terms should be interpreted in England and Wales.
This guidance explains the legal requirements but only the national or European Courts can give a definitive interpretation of the legislation.
“Water discharge activities” includes both those activities that require a permit, and those activities that are unlawful, for instance causing pollution to surface water, whether deliberate or accidental.
This guidance is part of a series of guidance documents which accompany the Environmental Permitting (England and Wales) Regulations 2010, SI 2010 No. 675 (“the Regulations”).