- Carry out, on a systematic basis, audits, inspections and other control actions to the activity carried out by bodies, services and entities;
- Carrying out inquiries, inquiries and other actions that are determined above;
- Exercise sectoral financial control of the organisms and services, within the framework of the annual and multi-annual objectives and targets set within the Internal Control System of the State Financial Administration (SCI);
- Systematically monitor and evaluate the degree of implementation of the recommendations made to the bodies, services and entities audited in the context of the actions carried out by IGAMAOT;
- Ensure the performance of administrative and financial auditing actions, as well as inspection of public and private entities in matters of environmental incidence, including those related to compliance with tax norms for environmental taxes and contributions, and impose measures that prevent or eliminate situations of serious danger to health, safety of people, property and the environment;
- Carry out inspections and audits in the areas of land use planning and nature conservation in order to monitor and evaluate compliance with legality;
- Exercise its own functions as a criminal police body in relation to crimes related to the fulfilment of its mission in matters of environmental incidence, without prejudice to the attributions of other entities;
- Initiate, instruct and decide environmental offence proceedings, under the terms of the environmental offence framework law, as well as in other cases provided for by law, and to raise notice of legally defined offences;
- Ensure the coordination of the National Audit System in the area of food safety under Regulation (EC) 882/2004 of the European Parliament and Council of 28 April;
- Carry out external audits of the official control systems implemented by the services and bodies in the field of food safety;
- Evaluating the internal audit systems of the competent authorities in the field of food safety;
- Ensure national coordination and implementation of ex-post controls on beneficiaries of support financed by the European Agricultural Guarantee Fund (FEAGA) and the European Agricultural Fund for Rural Development (FEADER);
- Carry out the specific service tasks provided for in Article 85 of Regulation (EU) No 1306/2013 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 17 December;
- Carry out audits of the management and control systems for aid granted and operations financed from national and European Union funds, in the sectors of agriculture, rural development, forestry and the sea;
- Conduct disciplinary proceedings, where determined;
- Issue opinions and draw up studies on matters within its remit, as well as to participate in the drafting of legal acts;
- Ensure national representation, including participation in national or international working groups or experts, as well as liaison with other national authorities, the European Commission and other Member States of the European Union and to establish external cooperation relations;
- Monitoring the European Union’s control missions, in the context of its tasks, including those relating to the European Agricultural Guarantee Fund (FEAGA), the European Agricultural Fund for Rural Development (FEADER), the European Maritime Affairs and Fisheries Fund (EAFF) and food safety;
- Coordinate the national representation in the European Union Network for the Implementation and Enforcement of Enviromental Law (IMPEL);
- Coordinate the national representation in the National Audit Systems Network for the implementation of Regulation (EC) No 882/2004 on the organisation of official control systems in the field of food safety;
- Proceed with inspection actions to public and private entities in order to monitor and evaluate compliance with radiological protection and nuclear safety standards, as well as, in this context, to initiate, instruct and decide administrative offence proceedings, under the terms of the environmental offences framework law, and raise news reports regarding the remaining infringements;
- Carry out inspection actions in matters related with ships and vessels, without prejudice to the duties of other entities.
- To promote the exchange of information and experiences between environmental authorities;
- To promote the development of national networks of environmental authorities, and cooperation among them;
- To support, encourage and facilitate the training and capacity building of environmental authorities;
- To develop greater consistency in approach, interpretation, implementation and enforcement of EU environmental legislation;
- Identify and develop best practices, produce common guidelines, tools and methodologies and actively contribute to improvements in monitoring/inspection, permitting and control/monitoring related to compliance with EU environmental legislation;
- Transmit to the European Commission and other European institutions the improvements to be made to regulations, with regard to their practicability, enforceability and legal force of rules.
- It disseminates good practices and relevant problems at Community level;
- Proposes, coordinates and evaluates harmonised implementation projects and joint inspections;
- Coordinates the exchange of inspectors;
- Identifies strategies and best practices in the field of enforcement;
- Develops working methods and tools useful for local inspectors;
- Develops procedures for electronic exchange of information;
- Establishes the necessary contacts with industry, with particular emphasis on the specific needs of SMEs and other stakeholders including relevant international organisations;
- Examines proposals for restrictions, with a view to advising on enforcement (Article 77(4));
- Establishes agreements on common issues to be addressed in Member States’ annual reports with regard to enforcement (Article 127).
The General Inspection of Agriculture, Sea, Environment and Spatial Planning
Following the restructuring of the State’s organisational model, determined by Decree-Law 86-A/2011 of 12 July, the Ministry of Agriculture, Rural Development and Fisheries and the Ministry of the Environment and Regional Planning were abolished, having succeeded the Ministry of Agriculture, the Sea, of the Environment and Spatial Planning (MAMAOT), whose organic law, Decree-Law 7/2012 of 17 January, created the General Inspection of Agriculture, Sea, Environment and Spatial Planning (IGAMAOT), resulting from the merger of the former General Inspection of Agriculture and Fisheries and General Inspection of Environment and Spatial Planning.
Under the terms of the Organic Law of the XXII Constitutional Government, published by Decree-Law 169-B/2019, of 3 December, in its current version, IGAMAOT is a central service of the direct administration of the State, endowed with administrative autonomy, with direction exercised jointly by the Minister of State Modernization and Public Administration, Minister of the Environment and Climate Action, Minister of Agriculture and Minister of the Sea.
IGAMAOT is a central service of the State’s direct administration of control, audit and inspection for the areas included in the mission and attributions of the bodies and services subject to the supervision of the Minister of State Modernization and Public Administration, Minister of Environment and Climate Action, Minister of Agriculture and Minister of the Sea.
IGAMAOT has its headquarters in Lisbon and operates throughout the country.
By Decree-Law 23/2012, of February 1st, amended and republished by Decree-Law 153/2015, of August 7th, with subsequent amendments by Decree-Law nº 108/2018, of December 3rd, and by Decree-Law nº 87/2020, of 15th October, four main areas were established for its intervention – control, inspection and auditing of services and bodies within the sphere of action of IGAMAOT, in the respective areas of administration and management, and in the areas of mission, namely within the scope of regulation and food safety and the control of support financed by national and EU funds and, in the areas of environment, radiological protection, land use planning and nature conservation, the permanent monitoring and evaluation of legality.
IGAMAOT continues the attributions foreseen in Decree-Law 23/2012, of February 1st, altered and republished by Decree-Law 153/2015, of August 7th, with subsequent amendments by Decree-Law nº 108/2018, of December 3rd, and by Decree-Law nº 87/2020, of 15th October:
IGAMAOT is subordinated to an internal organization model of the matrix type, the respective activity being developed by projects and actions, carried out by multidisciplinary teams whose constitution is fixed on a functional mobility basis.
Following the publication of Decree-Law 153/2015, of August 7th, which proceeds with the first amendment to Decree-Law 23/2012, of February 1st, within the scope of IGAMAOT’s organisation, a model for the centralised provision of administrative and logistical support services, to be provided by SG Mamb to IGAMAOT, is established. Decree-Law 108/2018, of December 3rd, has produced a new alteration, in view of the new competences in radiological protection.
The staff map for 2020 shows a total of 168 posts: 4 senior management, 124 special inspection career, 22 senior technical career, 2 IT career and 16 assistant staff.
IMPEL – European Union Network for the Implementation and Enforcement of Environmental Law (http://www.impel.eu/), whose coordination of the national representation is ensured by IGAMAOT, has the mission of contributing to the strengthening of the implementation of European legislation in the field of environment and nature conservation, through the sharing of knowledge and organization of joint actions between Public Administration entities, but also in cooperation with other entities such as the European network of judges and prosecutors and non-governmental organizations.
The IMPEL Network is an international non-profit association of network cooperation between the environmental authorities. Established in 1992, it comprises 52 members from 36 countries, including all Member States, accession and candidate countries to the European Union (EU), the European Economic Area and the European Free Trade Association (EFTA).
The importance of the mission and work of this Network is recognised within the European Commission and other EU institutions and is reflected in the EU’s 6th and 7th Environmental Action Programme, Recommendation 2001/331 of the European Parliament and of the Council, of 4 April 2001, providing for minimum criteria for environmental inspections in the Member States and, most recently the Environmental Compliance Assurance Initiative (ECA), an initiative of the European Commission http://ec.europa.eu/environment/legal/compliance_en.htm.
At national level, IGAMAOT coordinates the national representation in the IMPEL Network, in accordance with the provisions of no. 2 of article 2 of Decree-Law 153/2015, of August 7th.
The IMPEL Network proposes to achieve the following objectives:
IMPEL National Network
The creation of the IMPEL National Network was formalized on September 23, 2016 through the signing of a Cooperation Protocol, and later, on October 13, 2017, October 2, 2019 and February 11, 2021, the Ceremonies to formalize the integration of new members into the IMPEL National Network took place.
The IMPEL National Network currently includes the following members: Procurator General of the Republic (PGR), General Secretariat of the Ministry of Environment (SGMAmb), Portuguese Environment Agency (APA), General Inspection of Agriculture, Sea, Environment and Spatial Planning (IGAMAOT), Institute for Nature Conservation and Forests (ICNF), Regional Inspection of the Environment – Azores (IRA Azores), Regional Directorate of Spatial Planning and Environment – Madeira (DROTA Madeira), General Directorate of Territory (DGT), Water and Waste Services Regulatory Entity (ERSAR), Regional Coordination and Development Commissions (CCDR) of the North, Centre, Lisbon and Tagus Valley, Alentejo and Algarve and Public Security Police – Environmental Protection Brigades (PSP/BriPA), National Republican Guard – Nature and Protection Service (GNR/SEPNA), Polícia Judiciária (PJ) (PJ), as well as the National Council for Sustainable Development (CNADS), the latter entity with the status of Observer.
Portugal is represented at the IMPEL Network General Assembly by IGAMAOT and IRA Açores.
More detailed information and access to project reports at http://www.impel.eu/
ECHA (European Chemicals Agency) is the main vehicle for dissemination among regulatory authorities of the implementation of EU chemicals legislation with the aim of improving health and the environment as well as enhancing innovation and competitiveness.
ECHA supports companies in complying with legislation, promotes the safe use of chemicals, provides information on chemicals and addresses the chemicals of most concern.
ECHA includes, among other bodies, a Forum for Exchange of Information on Enforcement of Regulation (EC) 1907/2006 of 18 December.
The Forum promotes the Exchange of Information on Enforcement of Regulation (EC) 1907/2006 of 18 December (REACH), coordinates a network of Member State authorities responsible for its implementation and carries out the following activities:
The Forum is composed of members appointed by the Member States. Each Member State shall appoint one member of the Forum. Members are chosen for their role and experience in enforcement of chemicals legislation and maintain appropriate contacts with Member State competent authorities.
The Forum shall appoint its Chairperson. Each Member State shall appoint one member to the Forum for a three-year term, which shall be renewable. Stakeholders may also be invited to attend meetings as observers, as appropriate, at the request of members of the Forum or the Management Board.
The Forum shall also set up working groups for the development of specific projects.
More information at http://echa.europa.eu.
The IAEA – International Atomic Energy Agency is the international agency in the field of radiological and nuclear protection, namely in terms of safety standards issued, knowledge, peer review and international reports, and cooperates with the European Commission in this matter, through the DG Energy.
Among the IAEA’s key publications are its Safety Standards, which provide the fundamental principles, requirements and recommendations to ensure radiological and nuclear safety. These documents serve as a global and harmonized reference for the protection of people and the environment, in activities such as the medical uses of radiation, the operation of nuclear installations, the production, transport and use of radioactive material, and the management of radioactive waste, that must be subject to standards of safety, and they are available at https://www.iaea.org/resources/safety-standards.
More information about the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) at https://www.iaea.org
Major Accident Hazards Bureau (MAHB) manages two activities to support the implementation of Seveso inspection actions in countries implementing Seveso (also includes EEA countries, Norway and Iceland). These activities include the Technical Working Group on Seveso Inspections (TWG2) and the Mutual Joint Visit Program for Seveso inspectors (MJV), which is managed by MAHB in consultation with TWG2. The exchange of information that takes place in these two spheres of activity concerns both good inspection and enforcement practices, as well as good risk management practices that should be observed in Seveso facilities.
The Technical Working Group on Seveso Inspections (TWG2) promotes the exchange of best practices for the implementation of the Seveso Directive and risk management among EU Member States.
The Mutual Joint Visit Programme (MJV) of the European Commission is intended to serve as a vehicle to promote technical exchange between EU Member States, candidate countries and inspectors from countries implementing the Seveso Directive. The aim of this programme is to encourage the sharing and adoption of best practices for inspections through a system of regular information exchange.
IGAMAOT ensures national participation in both the Technical Working Group and the Mutual Joint Visit Programme.
More information at https://minerva.jrc.ec.europa.eu/en/minerva.