Thursday, 11 February 2021

Questions (108)

Mairéad Farrell


108. Deputy Mairéad Farrell asked the Minister for Housing, Local Government and Heritage the requirements placed on local councils to ensure that the stone and sand and other similar materials that the council or subcontractor on council projects purchases is sourced from properly licensed quarries. [7640/21]

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Written answers (Question to Housing)

The activity of quarrying falls under a number of legislative regimes. For example, quarries must have planning permission and from an operational perspective they must comply with health and safety regulations operated by Health and Safety Authority. In regard to the licensing of quarries, the Waste Management (Management of Waste from the Extractive Industries) Regulations 2009 came into operation on the 31 December 2009. Under Regulation 19(1) each Local Authority shall:

Establish and maintain a register of all extractive industries within its functional area including the extraction, treatment and storage of mineral resources, the working of quarries, and the extraction, treatment and storage of peat.

The overall Register is maintained by the Environmental Protection Agency and is publicly available. The Environmental Protection Agency falls under the remit of my colleague, the Minister for the Environment, Climate and Communications.

While the minimum performance requirements for buildings (including the materials used) are set in the Building Regulations, the procurement and purchasing of materials is a matter for the contracting authority. Responsibility for Public Procurement policy is a matter for the Office of Government Procurement (OGP), which operates as an office of the Department of Public Expenditure and Reform.