The Environmental Protection (Duty of Care) Regulations 1991 declare that all reasonable steps must be taken to keep waste safe. It affects everyone who produces, imports, treats, stores or transports waste and states that if you give waste to someone else, you must be sure they are authorised to take it, recycle it or dispose of it safely.
The Chartered Institution of Wastes Management chief executive Steve Lee said at the recent Resource Efficiency and Waste Management conference: The regulations have been around for 15 years, but are still one of the industrys best kept secrets.
But they will be extended and smartened up. There will be increased responsibility on how you describe the waste you are producing with more information needed to be given on what is bound to landfill.
If a business carries waste, it may have to demonstrate its competence, while all the companies that deal with waste will have to demonstrate the credentials of the company it employs to deal with its arisings.
You will have to describe through the duty of care how you treat waste and there wont be room for porky pies like not declaring everything any more. There will be new pressures and you will no longer be able to leave things out, Lee added.