This Update contains brief details of Government and EU publications, legislation, cases and other developments in England and Wales relevant to those interested in 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    Procurement
   Enforcement    Regulation
   Hazardous Waste    Waste Collection
   Infrastructure    Waste Management
   Litter and Fly-tipping    Waste Minimisation
   Municipal Waste    WEEE

Anaerobic Digestion

WRAP: Organics recycling survey 2012: this survey of the UK organics processing / recycling sector shows that anaerobic digestion (AD) is again driving growth. The total input of organic waste processed via AD increased to 1.69m tonnes. The research also shows that the largest source of non-agricultural feedstock to AD is food waste, around a third of which is derived from local authority collections. Composting input volumes also grew with a total contribution of 5.9m tonnes in 2012, a 4% increase on the 2010 survey. (8 October 2013)

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Environment Agency: Waste crime report 2012-2013: the Agency has published its second annual report on its enforcement activities, which shows that the number of illegal waste sites being shut down has increased by 70% on 2011/12 figures. This is attributed to the Environment Agency’s crackdown on illegal sites, which saw an Illegal Waste Sites Taskforce set up for two years. (October 2013)

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Hazardous Waste

Environment Agency: WM2 Guidance – Hazardous waste: Interpretation of the definition and classification of hazardous waste (3rd ed): revised reference manual with technical guidance on the assessment and classification of hazardous waste. (14 October 2013)

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DCLG: Planning Act 2008 – Summary of responses to the consultation on proposed changes to the suite of guidance documents for the major infrastructure planning regime: summarises responses to the April 2012 consultation on the Light Touch Review of the six guidance documents underpinning the Planning Act 2008. The suite of documents includes: guidance on the pre-application process; associated development; examinations; application forms; fees; and the compulsory acquisition of land. All guidance documents have now been published. (14 October 2013)

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Litter and Fly-tipping

Institute for European Environmental Policy (IEEP): How to improve EU legislation to tackle marine litter: this study analyses many different pieces of EU legislation to determine their relevance to marine litter, examines their deficiencies and gaps, and proposes options for improvement. It finds that so far, Member State implementation of the Marine Strategy Framework Directive has been inconsistent and unambitious, but despite uncertainties and information shortages, regional and national case studies have shown that targets can be set and measures implemented that will have a significant impact on marine litter. In the longer term an EU wide target for marine litter as required by the 7th Environment Action Programme should be set and incorporated into the Directive. The authors argue that incorporating the concept of marine litter into the Waste Framework and Packaging Waste Directives could be an important step towards ensuring that legislation addresses the issue. (7 October 2013)

IEEP: Reducing ship generated marine litter: this research was commissioned to inform a revision of the Port Reception Facilities Directive that requires ships to discharge their waste to dedicated port reception facilities in the EU. Since it came into force in 2002 there has been an increase in waste delivery to Member State ports, but illegal discharges at sea of ship generated waste still take place. It recommends that an indirect fee system be implemented, similar to that in Baltic ports, whereby the cost of delivering waste to port is included in the overall port fee paid by all visiting ships (rather than having an additional fee for waste). (3 October 2013) 

DEFRA: Fly-tipping statistics for England, 2012 to 2013: summarises the number and type of incidents of illegally deposited waste, the cost of dealing with them and the actions taken against fly tipping in England. It shows that local authorities dealt with over 711,000 incidents of fly-tipping in 2012/13, a decrease of 4% from 2011/12. The estimated cost of clearance of fly-tipping to local authorities in England in 2012/13 was £36.4m, nearly 3% down from 2011/12. (15 October 2013)

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Municipal Waste

DEFRA: Forecasting 2020 waste arisings and treatment capacity: this paper is a revised version of that published in February 2013. The analysis provides estimates of the likelihood of meeting the Landfill Directive target for the amount of biodegradable municipal waste (BMW) that goes to landfill and the impact of withdrawing DEFRA’s provisional allocation of financial support for three residual waste projects. The paper has been revised because the original analysis did not fully account for all of the known potential capacity expected to be delivered by 2020, which meant that the likelihood of meeting the target was underestimated. The revised publication contains more details of the changes made. (18 October 2013)
The figures have been used in the Analysis to inform the review of DEFRA financial support for the Norfolk County Council Residual Waste Treatment Project

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WRAP: Glassflow 2012 report : this report looks at the UK packaging glass market in the light of a lot of volatility in the glass packaging recycling sector. It quantifies and projects glass flows, i.e. the amount of packaging glass consumed and collected for recycling, in the UK in 2012 and reviews key market issues. (17 October 2013)

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Covanta Energy Ltd v Merseyside Waste Disposal Authority [2013] EWHC 2922 (TCC): C was an unsuccessful tenderer in the WDA's procurement of a proposed Resource Recovery Contract that was conducted using the Competitive Dialogue procedure under the Public Contracts Regulations 2006. C was involved in the procedure from 2007 and the deadline for the final tenders was 22 June 2012. In April 2013, the WDA announced its intention to award the contract to the only other tenderer, S. C applied for orders setting aside the WDA's decision not to award them the contract and to restrain MWDA from entering into the contract with S. C contended that there were manifest errors in the WDA's evaluation process. It submitted that Reg.47G of the Public Contracts Regulations 2006 applied to this procurement and so there was an automatic suspension requiring the WDA to refrain from entering into the proposed contract with S. The WDA said that Reg.47G did not apply because the procurement process began before it came into force.
The court held that it was very important that the regulations governing the procurement process itself, and its aftermath, should be clear and certain. The general rule was that decisions made pursuant to a procedure properly launched need follow only the legal rules in force at the time the procedure is launched. The transitional provisions in the 2009 amendment regulations were clear that the position in this present case was governed by the original, unamended Public Contracts Regulations, which excluded the remedy of automatic suspension. The court then considered whether it should grant C's request for an interim  injunction. It held that, on the balance of convenience, it would award C an interim injunction.  (26 September 2013)

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Home Office: Determining suitability to hold a scrap metal dealer’s licence: statutory guidance to local authorities on their duty under s.3(1) of the 2013 Act when issuing or renewing a licence to determine that the applicant is a suitable person to carry on business as a scrap metal dealer. (1 October 2013)

Home Office: Scrap Metal Dealers Act 2013 – Supplementary guidance: provides guidance on commonly raised issues in relation to new licensing process under the Scrap Metal Dealers Act 2013. (2 October 2013)

LGA: Scrap Metal Dealers Act 2013 – Applications guide: the Scrap Metal Dealers Act 2013 replaces the previous registration system for scrap metal dealers and establishes a new licensing regime in its place. This guide assists councils to implement the application process. It includes a template application form and model licences. (22 October 2013)

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Waste Collection

DEFRA: Letter to local authority bodies on the separate collection of waste paper, metal, glass and plastic: the Parliamentary Under Secretary of State Lord de Mauley has written to the LGA, National Association of Waste Disposal Authorities (NAWDO), Association of Directors of Environment, Economy, Planning & Transport (ADEPT) and the Local Authority Recycling Advisory Committee (LARAC) concerning the separate collection of waste paper, metal, glass and plastic. He informs them of the effect of forthocming regulations for co-mingled collections of paper, glass, plastic and metal waste streams which will require establishments or undertakings that collect waste paper, metal, plastic or glass to do so by way of separate collection from 1 January 2015. These requirements apply where separate collection: 

  • is necessary, in effect, to provide high quality recyclates, and 
  • is technically, environmentally and economically practicable.

Where waste paper, metal, plastic or glass has been collected separately all reasonable steps must be taken to keep that stream separate from other waste streams wherever this is necessary to provide high quality recyclates. He states that any local authorities considering new collection or disposal plans should take care to ensure that they are placing themselves in a position to fulfil their legal duties from 2015. (15 October 2013)

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Waste Electrical and Electronic Equipment

DBIS: Government response – Implementation of the WEEE recast Directive 2012/19/EU and changes to the UK WEEE system: in April 2013, the Government sought views on changes to the existing WEEE Regulations (SI 2006/3282) to transpose the recast WEEE Directive 2012/19 into UK legislation and on impacts on the WEEE Regulations of wider Government reviews on producer responsibility legislation and powers of entry provisions for regulators. This paper sets out the Government's response to that consultsation.  
DBIS has also published draft revised WEEE Regulations that revoke and replace the 2006 Regulations from 1 Jaunary 2014. The closing date for comments is 1 November 2013. (11 October 2013)

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Waste Management

WRAP: Estimates of waste in the food and drink supply chain: this report contains estimates for the amount of waste in the UK supply chain of food and drink. Estimates for 2011 are presented for food and drink manufacturing, retail and wholesale, including waste food and drink and waste packaging. The report shows that grocery waste in manufacturers and retailers amounts to 6.5 Mt. Some 4.9 Mt arises in manufacturing and some 1.6 Mt arises in retailing. The waste comprises 4.3 Mt of food, 1.6 Mt of packaging and 0.5 Mt ‘other’ material. (7 October 2013)

Environment Agency: Aggregates from inert waste. End of waste criteria for the production of aggrgates from inert waste: this Quality Protocol sets out end of waste criteria for the production and use of aggregates from inert waste. If the criteria set out are met, the resulting outputs will normally be regarded as having been fully recovered and to have ceased to be waste. (22 October 2013)

Welsh Government: Towards the sustainable management of Wales’ natural resources – Consultation on proposals for an Environment Bill: this White Paper seeks views on proposals to provide a modern statutory framework for the sustainable management of natural resources by legislating for a more joined-up and proactive process to deliver lasting economic, social and environmental benefit. It inculodes plans to make proactive changes for the regulation of waste segregation and collection and to enable changes to the carrier bag charging regime, in order to maximise the opportunities realised by the move towards a greener economy and drive resource efficiency. The consultation closes on 15 January 2014. (23 October 2013)

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Waste Minimisation

European Parliament: Technology options for feeding 10 billion people – Options for cutting food waste: in its roadmap for a resource efficient Europe, the European Commission has set the target to halve the generation of food waste by 2020. This study deals with approaches for preventing food waste based on a thorough analysis of the scale, reasons and pattern of food wastage in the 27 Member States. The focus is on measures and instruments that are considered in literature or in the current debate as particularly useful, easy to implement and/or that have already proven their effectiveness in practice. (15 October 2013)

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