Fortnightly Bulletin – 10th July 2023
10 July 2023
Report the amount of Electrical and Electronic Equipment (EEE) you place on the market
On 6 July 2023, new guidance was published on when businesses should report the amount of EEE they place on the market and how to do it.
If a business produces EEE, they must report how much EEE they place on the market annually if registered directly with the environmental regulator. If a business is registered with a Producer Compliance Scheme (PCS), they will submit the data on behalf of the business.
The guidance covers:
- What ‘place on the market’ means.
- How to record and report your data.
- When you can deduct exported EEE from placed on the market.
Storing samples of waste for regulation or investigation: RPS 183
The Regulatory Position Statement (RPS) does not change your legal requirement to have an environmental permit for a waste operation when regulatory and enforcement bodies store samples of waste for regulation or investigation at locations other than where the samples are tested or analysed.
However, the Environment Agency will not normally take enforcement action if you do not comply with this legal requirement if you meet the requirements in the RPS.
The regulatory position does not apply to any other legal requirements.
Materials facilities: waste sampling and reporting from October 2024
Materials Facilities (MFs) operators should check whether the Environmental Permitting (England and Wales) Regulations 2016 will apply to them from October 2024.
The amended regulations will mean that:
- more MFs will have to act under the regulations,
- single waste streams will be measured and reported for the first time,
- frequency of sampling will increase to 60kg for every 75 tonnes of incoming material,
- MFs will need to measure and report on 10 types of incoming waste material instead of four and say where the waste material is from,
- packaging and Deposit Return Scheme (DRS) material proportions will need to be sampled and reported,
- all the data collected (not just averages) must be reported to the regulator.
From October 2024, many MFs will be required to act under the regulations for the first time, including MF’s that:
- receive and manage at least 1,000 tonnes of household waste (or household-type waste) a year, including single waste streams or waste already separated at collection,
- consolidate or ‘bulk’ waste (for example, bulking or transfer stations) from multiple suppliers,
- sort waste into specified output materials, such as aluminium cans or cardboard.
MFs will need to self-assess to find out if the regulations apply to them.
Medium Combustion Plant: screening tool
On 26 June 2023, guidance was published on the Simple Calculation of Atmospheric Impact Limits (SCAIL) Combustion screening tool, to be used to find out if a business/person needs to apply for a simple or bespoke MCP permit.
The guidance covers:
- When to use the tool.
- How to use the tool.
- Assess if your process contribution is significant.
- Present your results.
- What to provide with your application.
- Contact the Environment Agency.
Articles of Interest
Survey suggests almost a fifth of all waste is illegally managed
The National Waste Crime Survey 2023 found nearly a fifth of all the waste produced in England is illegally managed, which is approximately 34 million tonnes across England every year (enough to fill four million skips).
Waste crime encompasses a range of illegal activities, including the dumping, burning, illegal shipping and misdescription of waste, and the operation of illegal waste sites.
Industry research suggests waste crime costs the English economy £1billion every year through evaded tax, environmental and social harm and lost legitimate business.
These findings provide evidence the Environment Agency needs to update and refine its approach to enforcement continually, as criminals shift their ways of working. Stopping and shutting down criminals in the waste sector remains a top priority for the Agency.
Power plant could lose subsidies over compliance
The House of Lords heard concerns over the environmental credentials of a site owned by an energy company which burns biomass; a company that has been given £11bn in government subsidies for its renewable schemes.
The House of Lords heard Ofgem was investigating whether the company had been complying with sustainability requirements, whilst the company stated it had strict governance in place to oversee compliance.
The industry claims the wood burned by the energy company is sustainably sourced from forestry waste, however, critics have raised doubts over the veracity of this.
During the debate, Labour peer Baroness Jones called for independent scientists to be sent to Canada to verify the sustainability of wood used to make biomass pellets.
Independent crossbencher, Baroness Boycott, referenced information from Canadian environmentalists who she said had reported “the ancient forest being destroyed for those wood pellets”.
In response, Lord Callanan said Ofgem was investigating matters and said: “If it is proved that they are not in compliance, then of course some of the value of the certificates they have received will be withdrawn.”
Fines and Prosecutions
Man fined thousands for running illegal waste site in Teesside
A man appeared in court on 4 July 2023, pleading guilty to operating a waste site without a permit, failing to produce waste transfer notes and failing to comply with a notice to clear the site of waste.
The man was fined and ordered to pay costs totalling almost £26,000 for running and illegal waste site. He was also banned from being the director of a company for two years and ordered to clear the site by the end of the year.
The court heard that in May 2021, the man submitted a request for advice to the Environment Agency, which indicated he wanted to operate a waste transfer station. The Agency replied with advice and was clear that activities must not start without an environmental permit in place.
In October of the same year, the Environment Agency started to receive reports of vermin and large quantities of waste on the site. Officers attended and although the site was locked they could see around 100 tonnes of mixed commercial and domestic waste, including fridges, freezers and PVC window frames.
Gary Wallace, Area Environment Manager for the Environment Agency, said:
“Environmental permits are in place to protect the public and environment and we told [the man] no waste operation could start without one. No permit was ever applied for, with [the man] and the company he ran deliberately flouting the law.”
Online Learning and Events
Webinar: steel reuse in construction: delivering innovative steel reuse project toolkit
19th July 2023
Join the Alliance for Sustainable Building Products (ASBP) to find out about the recently launched Delivering Innovative Steel ReUse ProjecT (DISRUPT) toolkit.
The purpose of the toolkit is to provide major supply chain stakeholders involved in steel reuse, ranging from demolition contractors to clients, with guidance, business considerations, case studies and more, to facilitate new market entrants and achieve a greater supply of reused steel in the construction industry.
This webinar will explain how to use the toolkit, it’s key features and include talks from partners involved in the DISRUPT project.
There will be time at the end for a Q&A session.
First annual conference on nature-based solutions using carbon and biodiversity credit funding
27th and 28th July 2023/ University of Lincoln
This conference organised by the University of Lincoln in partnership with the IEMA offers the first opportunity for bringing together representatives from all these areas to share information and work together to realise these goals.
The conference will enable conversations between all participants through a series of interactive Panel-based discussions involving public, private, NGO and research sector representatives from the UK, Europe, USA, Central America and South East Asia.
Delegates will be able to meet and network informally throughout the event, which includes a drinks evening and has dedicated breakout rooms for ad hoc discussions during the conference.