Regulation of industrial air pollution

Companies emitting significant levels of air pollutants are regulated by means of environmental approvals or injunctions.

Permits and inspection 

The municipalities are responsible for granting permits and inspection of most companies subject to authorisation. The most polluting industries are governed by the Environmental Protection Agency's decentralised units with regard to approvals and inspection.

A company's environmental permit states the pollutant limit values for that specific company. Limit values as stipulated in permits are based on Statutory Orders issued by the Environmental Protection Agency, BAT reference documents (best available techniques), as well as air pollution and B-value guidelines. 

Statutory Orders 

The Environmental Protection Agency has issued various Statutory Orders over the years, which regulate air pollution from specific types of industries and plants, including branch-related Statutory Orders.

See overview of Statutory Orders and guidelines

Large combustion plants with a rated thermal input greater than 50MW 

Large power/heat producing plants must comply with EU requirements for emissions of the air pollutants dust, SO2 og NOx.

Read more about limiting certain air pollutants from large combustion plants in Statutory Order no. 1453 of 20 December 2012 (in Danish)

Waste co-incineration plants

All facilities must comply with EU requirements for emissions of several air pollutants. Plants are obliged to measure regularly and document their compliance with emission limits for dust, total organic carbon (TOC), SO 2 , NO x and CO. In addition, they must use performance measurements to demonstrate that HCl, HF, heavy metal, as well as dioxin and furan limits are observed.

Read more about waste incineration plants in Statutory Order no. 1451 of 20 December 2012 (in Danish)

General guidelines 

The Environmental Protection Agency has issued various Statutory Orders over the years. These regulate permitted levels of air pollution from a company or plant, for instance, branch-related Statutory Orders. In addition, several guidance documents have been produced by the Environmental Protection Agency for it's decentralised units, municipalities and companies that require environmental approvals.

See overview of Statutory Orders and guidelines 

Air pollution and B-value guidelines 

The air pollution guidelines explain how regulations limit emissions and monitor industrial pollution. They also explain the use of B-values and the OML-model (air dispersion calculations) to assess the extent of pollution by harmful substances.

Download Environmental Guidelines no. 1 of 2002 on air emission regulation (PDF, 552KB) 


Several types of industry can constitute a nuisance for their surroundings because of odours. Food and feed manufacturers, waste incineration plants and industries that use organic solvents are in particular to blame for odour problems experienced by people living nearby.

The Environmental Protection Agency’s guidelines on odour set limits for odours produced by companies. Municipalities can lay down conditions for limiting odours from local industries. This is particularly relevant in areas where industry is located close to residential areas.

Download Environmental Guidelines no. 9 of 2002 on industrial odour control (PDF, 232KB) 

Branch annexes 

The Environmental Protection Agency is currently drawing up branch annexes with standard conditions for several branches of industry. The standard conditions concern the equipment and operation of companies, emission limit values for significant air pollution and conditions for in-house monitoring.

Overview of branch annexes in force (in Danish)