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EA pleased with High Court verdict

The Environment Agency (EA) has welcomed a High Court ruling which dismissed two cases where companies attempted to change rules on burning certain wastes.

Eventually, the EA were awarded costs, but both Solvent Resource Management (SRM) and OSS Group wanted to show that when some streams are used as fuel they should not be classed as waste.

While the two have now been given leave to appeal, the EA welcomed the decision that could have had massive implications for the burning of waste if it had gone the other way.

EA head of waste regulation Liz Parkes said: Both SRM and OSS Group wanted to show that some types of waste, which are processed and can be used as a fuel, should cease to be waste before they are burnt.

If OSS and SRM were allowed to reclassify certain processed wastes as non-waste, this would have allowed material to be burnt as fuel without the checks and balances that are stipulated under the Waste Incineration Directive (WID). We feel that the stringent criteria under the WID for any process which burns waste, is an important factor in minimising risks to the environment and human health.

The EA official stated that it is a very complex area of environmental law and while the agency has taken great care to adopt an appropriate position, this has attracted criticism.

We are therefore very pleased that our understanding of the law has been supported by the court, and in the clearest of terms, she added.

 

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