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SEPA publishes new guidance for waste oils

Fuel oils from recycled waste that meet the correct specification will no longer be regulated as waste in Scotland, according to new guidance published by the Scottish Environment Protection Agency (SEPA).

The Production of Processed Fuel Oil from Waste guidance ensures there is consistency in the treatment of waste oils across Scotland, England, Wales and Northern Ireland and ensures that waste oil meets the parameters set out in the British standard BS2869:2006 meaning it poses no greater risk to the environment or human health than a virgin fuel.

SEPA is hoping that with sufficient treatment, waste oil will be processed into replacement fuels with similar environmental performance to a virgin fuel and wants to encourage high quality processing of waste oil. If waste oil is processed as per the SEPA guidance then it will not be subject to the requirements of waste legislation, including the Waste Incineration Directive. Fuel oil which does not meet the specification will remain classified as waste.

SEPA head of waste policy Kenny Boag said: “This is an important development for a problematic waste stream. We hope it will encourage waste oil to be collected, processed to a high standard and used to replace other virgin fuels, thereby ensuring environmental protection and encouraging re-manufacturing industries to derive value out of waste in the economy.”

In order for fuel oil processors to take advantage of this new policy, they should contact SEPA and provide evidence of compliance with the specification detailed in the new guidance.

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