An important aspect of Waste Disposal is the legislation that governs it; in all instances the waste producer bears the sole responsibility for any waste that is produced; whether it is Clinical / Hazardous waste, for example produced from a care home or General / Commercial waste, for example produced from a restaurant.
Nowadays there are strict guidelines that cover all aspects of waste disposal to ensure that the waste is disposed of in the correct manor; guidelines make sure that any waste that is produced is properly transported by using registered waste carriers and disposed of at the correct final point of disposal.
Waste Compare UK could not list all the legislations that govern Waste Disposal; instead any questions that need answering can be easily found at the following website......
Below is a list of frequently asked questions from the industry
Waste has historically been difficult to define with individuals or companies interpretation differing greatly in the way waste is seen. For example, biodegradable organic material such as food waste maybe seen as 'waste' to domestic households, but through treatment and anaerobic breakdown this product becomes compost which can be resold as nutrient rich soil. This difficulty in interpreting waste types has led to strict definition to ensure different waste types are handled and disposed of according to stringent regulation and laws.
The Waste Management Licensing Regulations 1994 defines waste as "any substance or object in which the producer or the person in possession of it discards or intends or is required to discard".
Waste is further categorised by the premises they arise from, or the process waste undergoes: - Controlled waste is any waste arising from domestic, industrial, commercial sources excluding mining and quarrying and in general agricultural waste - Clinical waste from hospitals, surgeries, dentist, nurseries and care homes is still classed as controlled waste but generally requires different disposal methods including incineration an autoclave processes - Hazardous wastes also fall under the controlled waste regime. The Environment Protection Act 1990 places people concerned with controlled waste under a Duty Of Care to ensure that the waste is managed properly, recovered or disposed of safely and is only transferred to someone who is authorised to keep it
The Government has employed financial pressures to try and shift waste producers away from the existing reliance on landfill. Since its foundation in 1999, landfill tax has risen every year. In April 2007 when landfill tax was £24 per tonne, the chancellor announced in his budget speech that the landfill tax escalator will increase from £3 per tonne to £8 per tonne each year for the foreseeable future, from 1st April 2008. This means that in 2010, only 3 years later, the landfill tax doubled to £48 per tonne. It is therefore obvious that landfill is becoming an every increasingly expensive option. This strategy will help encourage waste producers to reduce the amount of waste they throw away, promote recycling initiatives and make it more financially attractive for the waste industry to invest in new innovative waste treatment methods.
Duty of care was introduced under the Environment Protection Act 1990 (Section 34) which states that it is the duty of any business to ensure that their waste is handled in a safe and environmentally responsible way and that it is transferred to authorised persons for the safe transportation to a licensed disposal or recovery site. Parties involved in this 'waste chain' include the producer of the waste, the waste carrier and waste disposer as well as waste brokers who may arrange for the collection of waste on behalf of someone else. Everyone within this waste chain has an obligation to fulfil the duty of care until the waste has been disposed of safely.
Key Elements That Exist To The Duty Of Care: Identify The Waste Type The waste producer must describe the type of waste using the appropriate six digit European Waste Catalogue code. e.g. 20 03 01 is the code for commonly used 'mixed municipal waste' Safe Storage Of The Waste The waste producer is responsible for ensuring safe storage of waste to allow it to be transported safely. This includes guarding against adverse weather conditions, spillage and overfilling of containers as well as protecting against fire and scavenging of waste. Authorised Waste Carriers, Broker and Licensed Disposal Sites The waste producer must ensure that waste is only collected by a registered waste carrier and it is disposed of at a licensed site which accepts the waste type being disposed. Similarly, waste brokers need to be registered with the appropriate government agency dependent on their operating region. Waste Transfer Notes (WTN) A WTN must accompany the waste when it is transferred from one party of the waste chain to another. The WTN must include the following information: - Description of waste and quantity and how it is stored (e.g. in Eurobins or sacks) - Waste producer details (name, address and signature of declaration) - Waste Carrier (name, address, License number and signature of declaration) - Details of waste collection including service address, date, time - Waste disposal details (name, address, Waste Management License number) To reduce the time involved in completing individual WTN's for scheduled collections, a season ticket can be issued. This covers duty of care requirements for up to one year and is utilised when waste carriers collect the same amount and type of waste from a site on a regular basis. All WTN's must be kept for a minimum of 2 years as the Environment Agency, SEPA and NIEA are entitled to review these at any point over this period. Ensure Reasonable Measures Are Taken To Prevent Breach Of The Duty The Duty of Care highlights that all parties in the waste chain must provide evidence that all reasonable attempts have been made to prevent illegal disposal of the waste. For example, waste producers may request a confirmation (tip) ticket from licensed landfill site for waste disposed to ensure requirements are fulfilled.
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