The Environment (Air Quality and Soundscapes) (Wales) Act 2024

A Welsh Government Bill, introduced by Julie James MS, Minister for Climate Change. The Business Committee has remitted the Bill to the Climate Change, Environment, and Infrastructure Committee.

 

About the Bill

The Bill proposes:

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>>>to provide a framework for setting national air quality targets;

>>>to amend existing legislation relating to the national air quality strategy; local air quality management; smoke control; clean air zones/low emission zones and vehicle idling;

>>>to place a duty on Welsh Ministers to promote awareness of air pollution; and

>>>to place a duty on Welsh Ministers to publish a national soundscape strategy.

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Further detail about the Bill can be found in its accompanying Explanatory Memorandum (PDF 2.0MB).

 

Current Stage

BillStageAct

 

The Environment (Air Quality and Soundscapes) (Wales) Act 2024 became law in Wales 14 February 2024. An explanation of the various stages of Senedd Bills is available in the Guide to the Stages of Public Bills and Acts.

 

Record of Passage in the Welsh Parliament

The following table sets out the dates for each stage of the Bill’s passage through the Senedd.

 

¬¬¬Date of Royal Assent (14 February 2024)

Royal Assent (PDF 162KB) was given on 14 February 2024.

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¬¬¬Post-Stage 4

The Counsel General (PDF 162KB) and the Secretary of State for Wales (PDF 122KB) wrote to the Llywydd to advise that they would not be referring the Environment (Air Quality and Soundscapes) (Wales) Bill to the Supreme Court under Sections 112 and 114 of the Government of Wales Act 2006 – 18 December 2023 and 19 December 2023.

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¬¬¬Stage 4, vote by the Senedd to pass the final text of the Bill (28 November)

Stage 4 proceedings of The Environment (Air Quality and Soundscapes) (Wales) Bill took place in Plenary on Tuesday 28 November 2023.

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>>>The Environment (Air Quality and Soundscapes) (Wales) Bill (PDF 213KB), as passed.

>>>Presiding Officer’s statement in accordance with Section 111A(3) of the Government of Wales Act 2006

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¬¬¬Stage 3, Plenary consideration of amendments (12 October – 21 November)

Following the completion of Stage 2 proceedings, Stage 3 commenced on 12 October 2023. The Senedd agreed on 14 November 2023, under Standing Order 26.36, that the order of consideration for Stage 3 proceedings would be: sections 1 to 20; schedule 1; sections 21 to 22; schedule 2; sections 23 to 30; Long Title.

 

Stage 3 proceedings of The Environment (Air Quality and Soundscapes) (Wales) Bill took place in Plenary on Tuesday 21 November 2023.

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>>>Notice of Amendments (PDF 83KB) - 13 October 2023

>>>Notice of Amendments (PDF 120KB) - 7 November 2023

>>>Notice of Amendments (PDF 124KB) - 8 November 2023

>>>Notice of Amendments (PDF 103KB) - 9 November 2023

>>>Welsh Government: Purpose and effect table (PDF 110KB) - 10 November 2023

>>>Notice of Amendments (PDF 79KB) - 13 November 2023

>>>Notice of Amendments (PDF 121KB) - 14 November 2023

>>>Marshalled List of Amendments (PDF 194KB) - 15 November 2023

>>>Grouping of Amendments (PDF 90KB) - 16 November 2023

>>>The Environment (Air Quality and Soundscapes) (Wales) Bill (PDF 213KB), as amended at Stage 3. (amendments to the Bill since the previous version are indicated as sidelining in the margin)

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¬¬¬Stage 2, Committee consideration of amendments (13 September 2023 - 11 October 2023)

Stage 2 began on 13 September 2023. The Climate Change, Environment, and Infrastructure Committee agreed on 20 September 2023, under Standing Order 26.21, that the order of consideration for Stage 2 proceedings would be:

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>>>Sections 1-18; Schedule 1; Sections 19-20; Schedule 2; Sections 21-28; Long Title

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Stage 2 consideration took place in Committee on 11 October 2023.

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>>>Notice of Amendments (PDF 136KB) - 18 September 2023

>>>Welsh Government: Purpose and effect table (PDF 288KB) - 19 September 2023

>>>Notice of Amendments (PDF 151KB) - 2 October 2023

>>>Notice of Amendments (PDF 73KB) - 3 October 2023

>>>Notice of Amendments (PDF 157KB) - 4 October 2023

>>>Marshalled List of Amendments (PDF 252KB) - 6 October 2023

>>>Grouping of Amendments (PDF 91KB) - 9 October 2023

>>>The Environment (Air Quality and Soundscapes) (Wales) Bill (PDF 199KB), as amended at Stage 2. (amendments to the Bill since the previous version are indicated as sidelining in the margin)

>>>Explanatory Memorandum, revised after stage 2

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Stage 2 Correspondence

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>>>Correspondence from the Deputy Minister for Climate Change to the Chair in relation to the Environment (Air Quality and Soundscapes) (Wales) Bill Group 5 amendments (PDF 227KB) 30 October 2023

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¬¬¬Financial Resolution

In accordance with Standing Order 26.68 the Presiding Officer indicated that a financial resolution was required for this Bill.  Further information about financial resolutions is available in section 3 of the Guide to the scrutiny stages for Public Bills.

 

A Financial Resolution in relation to the Environment (Air Quality and Soundscapes) (Wales) Bill was agreed in Plenary on 19 September 2023.

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¬¬¬Stage 1, Committee consideration of the general principles (20 March 2023 - 12 September 2023)

A debate took place in Plenary on 12 September 2023. The motion to agree the general principles of the Bill was agreed.

 

The Climate Change, Environment, and Infrastructure Committee laid its report on 14 July 2023. The Committee received a response (PDF 346KB) from the Welsh Government on 1 September 2023 and an additional response (PDF 227KB) on 25 October 2023.

 

The Climate Change, Environment and Infrastructure Committee considered its approach to Stage 1 consideration on 16 March 2023.

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>>>Consultation responses

>>>Public engagement – summary findings (PDF 233KB)

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Stage 1 Correspondence

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>>>Letter to the Minister for Climate Change with follow up questions following the Ministerial evidence session on the Environment (Air Quality and Soundscapes) (Wales) Bill (PDF 104KB) 31 March 2023

>>>Response from the Minister for Climate Change to the Chair’s letter of 31 March in relation to The Environment (Air Quality and Soundscapes) (Wales) Bill (PDF 250 KB) 21 April 2023

>>>Written technical briefing (PDF 749 KB) 26 June 2023

>>>Letter from the Minister for Climate Change in relation to a discrepancy between the EM and the Bill relating to smoke control (PDF 103KB) 28 June 2023

>>>Letter from the Minister for Rural Affairs and North Wales, and Trefnydd in relation to the General Principles for the Environment (Air Quality and Soundscapes) (Wales) Bill (PDF 184KB) 13 July 2023

>>>Additional response from the Welsh Government to the Committee’s Stage 1 report on the Environment (Air Quality and Soundscapes) (Wales) Bill (PDF 227KB) 25 October 2023

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Committee dates

The Climate Change, Environment and Infrastructure Committee will consider the Bill on the following dates:

 

Date and Agenda

Purpose of meeting

Transcript

Senedd.TV

16 March 2023

Consideration of approach to Stage 1 scrutiny

Private

Private

29 March 2023

Evidence session with the Minister for Climate Change

Transcript

View meeting

4 May 2023

Evidence sessions

Transcript

View meeting

11 May 2023

Evidence sessions

Transcript

View meeting

17 May 2023

Evidence sessions

Transcript

View meeting

24 May 2023

Evidence session with the Minister for Climate Change

Transcript

View meeting

6 July 2023

Consideration of draft report

Private

Private

 

The Legislation, Justice and Constitution Committee will consider the Bill on the following dates:

Date and Agenda

Purpose of meeting

Transcript

Senedd.TV

15 May 2023

Evidence session with the Minister for Climate Change

Transcript

View meeting

 

The Legislation, Justice and Constitution Committee laid its report on 14 July 2023 (PDF 647KB).  The Welsh Government responded to the report on 1 September 2023.

 

The Finance Committee will consider the Bill on the following dates:

Date and Agenda

Purpose of meeting

Transcript

Senedd.TV

26 April 2023

Evidence Session

Transcript

View meeting

 

The Finance Committee laid its report on 12 July 2023 (PDF 262KB).

 

The Welsh Government submitted its response (PDF, 504KB) to the Finance Committee’s report and recommendations on 1 September 2023.

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¬¬¬Bill introduced (20 March 2023)

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>>>The Environment (Air Quality and Soundscapes) (Wales) Bill, as introduced (PDF 218KB)

>>>Explanatory Memorandum (PDF 2.0MB)

>>>Presiding Officer’s Statement (PDF 69KB) 20 March 2023

>>>Business Committee’s Report on the timetable for consideration of the Bill (PDF 38KB) 21 March 2023

>>>Statement of policy intent (PDF 247KB)

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Contact information

Clerk: Marc Wyn Jones

Phone: 0300 200 6565

 

Postal address:

Welsh Parliament

Cardiff Bay

Cardiff

CF99 1SN

 

e-mail: SeneddClimate@senedd.wales

Business type:

Status: For consideration

First published: 20/03/2023

Documents

Consultations