This Update contains brief details of recent Government and EU publications, legislation, cases and other developments in England and Wales relevant to those interested in municipal waste management, which have been published in the past month.

Items are set out by subject, with a link to where the full document can be found on the internet. All links are correct at the date of publication.

If you have been forwarded this update by a colleague and would like to receive it direct please email Claire Booth.

The following topics are covered in this update:

   Anaerobic Digestion    Recycling
   Enforcement    Waste Collection
   Packaging Waste    Waste Management

Anaerobic Digestion

WRAP: Malaby Biogas is first to benefit from WRAP AD Loan Fund: announces that £800,000 funding from WRAP's £10m anaerobic digestion fund has been granted to Malaby Biogas Ltd to construct and commission a new anaerobic digestion plant on a site near Warminster, Wiltshire. The fund provides individual loans ranging from £50,000 - £1m over a five-year period. The closing date for applications for the current round is 30 April 2012. (12 January 2012) 

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DCLG: Proposed policy statement for Part 2 of the Localism Act 2011: Part 2 of the 2011 Act introduces a discretionary power for a Minister of the Crown to require a public authority to pay some or all of an ECJ financial sanction for breach of EU law (including failure to comply with the Waste Framework Directive 2008/98) where the public authority has demonstrably caused or contributed to that sanction. The Act defines ‘public authority’ as a local authority and any other body or person which has non-devolved public functions. Where a local or public authority has contracted with another party to deliver services regarding that function, the legal obligation in relation to that function remains with the original authority. Costs would only be incurred by those authorities that had responsibility to comply, had demonstrably caused or contributed to the financial sanction, and had previously been designated under s.52 of the Localism Act for the infraction case in question. Section 49 requires the Secretary of State to consult on and publish a policy statement on Part 2. This draft policy statement sets out DCLG's approach for the use of Part 2, which it considers to be fair, proportionate and reasonable. The consultation closes on 22 April 2012. (31 January 2012)

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Packaging Waste

DEFRA: Amendment to the consultation on packaging recovery and recycling targets for 2013-2017: DEFRA launched a consultation on proposals for new packaging waste recycling and recovery targets on 16 December 2011. Errors have since been identified within the data. This note sets out corrections to the achievement levels deriving from the proposed targets. The consultation closes on 10 February 2012. (20 January 2012) 

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Welsh Government: Draft guidance in support Statutory Recovery Targets set under Waste (Wales) Measure 2010: this draft guidance clarifies the definitions of recycling, preparation for re-use and composting in the the Recycling, Preparation for Re-use and Composting Targets (Definitions) (Wales) Order 2011 (SI 2011/551 (W.77)) and the monitoring and reporting requirements contained in regs.4 & 5 of the Recycling, Preparation for Re-use and Composting Targets (Monitoring and Penalties) (Wales) Regulations 2011 (SI 2011/1014 (W.152)). It also seeks views on de-watering, apportionment of recycling rates from anaerobic digestion, composting and the recycling of incinerator bottom ash. The consultation closes on 16 April 2012. (23 January 2012)

WRAP: Kerbside collection of plastic bottles guide: this technical guide aims to help waste collection authorities increase plastic bottle recycling rates. It explores the importance of collecting high quality materials and what this means, the types of kerbside collection that could be used and their advantages, and the steps that authorities need to take to be sure it is right for their area. (30 January 2012)

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Waste Collection

DEFRA: Amending the powers of local authorities regarding presentation of waste for collection: s.46 EPA 1990 sets out the penalties which local authorities may apply to householders who present their waste incorrectly for collection. This consultation seeks views on a proposal to replace the current criminal offence with a new civil sanction.  Local authorities will still be able to issue fixed penalties in limited circumstances where there is “harm to local amenity”.  The test aims to ensure that penalties are targeted at those who behave in a way which reduces the quality of their neighbours’ surroundings.  The maximum level of penalties (and their range) applying under the current fixed penalty regime will be reduced as an interim measure within the next six months, pending the introduction of the amended legislation. The consultation closes on 9 March 2012. (16 January 2012)

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Waste Management

Welsh Government: Local Authority Municipal Waste Management, July-September 2011: this statistical release covers provisional quarterly results from the Environment Agency’s WasteDataFlow system for Quarter 2, 2011-12. It shows that recycling rates rose to 49% in that quarter, up from 41%. Per person residual household waste in Wales has continued to decrease, falling from 68 kg per person in July to September 2010 to 59 kg per person in July to September 2011. (11 January 2011)

Welsh Government: Guidance on applying the Waste Hierarchy: Article 4 of the revised EU Waste Framework Directive 2008/98 sets out five steps for dealing with waste, ranked according to environmental impact, known as the Waste Hierarchy. Businesses and public bodies now have a duty to apply the waste hierarchy when making decisions about their waste. This guidance has been produced to assist them in applying the hierarchy. (19 January 2012)

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