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Defra publishes hazardous waste management consultation

The Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs has launched a consultation on a proposed strategy for hazardous wastemanagement in England.

It has been produced to underpin the practical application of the revised Waste Framework Directive and asks questions on a range of issues, including infrastructure provision and the timeline for the strategys implementation.

Defra states that the strategy is necessary because clarity is needed on how the requirements of the revised WFD should be implemented, particularly the revised waste hierarchy with respect to the management of hazardous waste.

The strategy is also intended to facilitate the provision of infrastructure for the management of hazardous waste.

The following proposals are included in the strategy:

  • Seven high level principals for the management of hazardous waste. These include: waste hierarchy, infrastructure provision, reducing reliance on landfill, no mixing or diluting, treatment of organic hazardous waste, ending reliance on the use of the Landfill Directive waste acceptance criteria derogations, and, the treatment and landfilling of hazardous waste;
  • A set of outline decision trees [decision support tool] to assist waste producers and waste managers to make the right decisions about the management of their waste and the investment in infrastructure to help move hazardous waste management up the waste hierarchy;
  • A timeline of action on issues relation to the introduction and implementation of the strategy;
  • A list of guidance relating to the treatment of hazardous waste.

Defra states that the strategy seeks to set out a framework to help hazardous waste producers and hazardous waste managers find the best solution for their waste streams. It seeks to encourage a programme of facility development over the next five to 10 years.

The introduction of the consultation comes amid news that a shipping company that illegally took exported UK waste over to Brazil will have to pay the cost of returning it back (see MRW story).The consultation states that the Waste Shipments Regulation provides grounds for competent authorities [Environment Agency for England and Wales] to raise objections to shipments of waste.

The consultation is opened to everyone with an interest in the environmentally sound management of hazardous waste and all responses should be received by 13 October 2009.

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