The Office for Environmental Protection (OEP) is a new public body, legally formed on 17 November 2021 under the Environment Act 2021. It is expected that the OEP will be fully established early in 2022 after Parliament takes the steps needed for our functions and powers to be made available to it.
The OEP protects and improves the environment by holding government and public authorities to account. Its work covers England. In the coming months, the Northern Ireland Assembly may also decide that the OEP’s work will cover Northern Ireland.
When fully established, the OEP will
- review and report on government’s progress in meeting environmental goals and targets
- monitor and report on the implementation of environmental law
- advise government on proposed changes to the law and other environmental matters
- investigate suspected failures to comply with environmental law by government and other public bodies and enforce compliance where needed
The public can make a complaint to us where they suspect that the government or a public authority has failed to comply with environmental law.