The “SEVESO” Directive deals specifically with the prevention and control of major industrial risks involving dangerous substances. Named after the 1976 accident at a chemical plant manufacturing pesticides and herbicides in Seveso, Italy, it was amended several times over the years into a “SEVESO II”, then a “SEVESO III” directive, and its scope is progressively extending. 

SEVESO II – preventing major industrial accidents

The SEVESO II directive requires EU Member States and companies to identify and take appropriate measures to deal with the risks associated with the presence at sites or potential generation of certain dangerous substances in quantities exceeding specified thresholds. Under SEVESO II, “dangerous substances” are those belonging to a hazard category listed in Annex I of the directive or specifically listed therein.  

SEVESO III - as of 1 June 2015

As of 1 June 2015, the Directive 2012/18/EU on the control of major-accident hazards involving dangerous substances, also called the SEVESO III directive, will replace the current SEVESO II directive. SEVESO III aligns  Annex I with the changes in the EU system of classification of dangerous substances introduced by the Regulation (EC) 1272/2008 on classification, labelling and packaging of substances and mixtures (the CLP Regulation).  In addition, the SEVESO III directive strengthens certain provisions relating to the communication of safety information and to public access to information, decision-making and justice. It also introduces stricter standards for inspections of installations.

The scope of SEVESO and Industrial Minerals

As it was the case for SEVESO II, Industrial Minerals covered by IMA-Europe are exempted from the scope of SEVESO III:

  • Article 2 (e) and (f) reads that the SEVESO III directive does not apply to the exploitation, namely the exploration, extraction and processing, of minerals in mines and quarries, including by means of boreholes” and the offshore exploration and exploitation of minerals […]”;
  • Since none of the Industrial Minerals within IMA-Europe are covered by one of the categories of dangerous substances listed in Annex I of the directive, other possible activities such as chemical and thermal processing operations and storage, as well as tailing disposal facilities are also out of scope of the directive.