The Environment Agency (EA) has said that the changes to hazardous waste regulation that will come into effect on 1 April will reduce the regulatory burden on business.
From 1 April 2016, the requirement for businesses operating hazardous waste premises in England to register premises with the Environment Agency will stop.
The aim is to reduce costs and administration for the operator. The change has been brought about by the Strategic Smarter Environmental Regulation Review.
EA – “By eliminating the need to register with us these changes will reduce the regulatory burden on business and the use of the revised consignee information will help ensure that we can continue to trace hazardous waste back to its source”
Businesses producing, storing or handling 500kg or more of hazardous waste annually in England will no longer need to register its premises with the EA, but it must continue to have a valid registration up until 1 April 2016.
This change only applies to premises in England. Premises in Wales must continue to register with their environmental regulator, Natural Resources Wales.
A spokesperson for the Environment Agency said: “By eliminating the need to register with us these changes will reduce the regulatory burden on business and the use of the revised consignee information will help ensure that we can continue to trace hazardous waste back to its source.”
To prepare for the change, the EA has released advice for businesses around the changes.
Removing the need for premises to register, causes a change to the format of the unique consignment note code, which will also apply in England from 1 April 2016. Businesses will need to amend the first six characters of the consignment note code (currently the premises registration number), replacing them with the first six letters or numbers of the business name. Businesses must ensure consistent use of these six letters or numbers. “Exempt” will no longer be used. The second set of characters will continue to be five numbers or letters of your choosing.
Legally businesses are still required to use the current format on consignment notes up until 1 April 2016. If you pre-print your consignment notes, you will need to make sure you do not print more than you will use by the end of 31 March 2016.
The changes to the format of the consignment note code, which appears on every consignment note, only apply to consignments starting in England.
Consignment note codes for wastes originating in Wales, Scotland or Northern Ireland are not changing.
A consignment note must accompany hazardous waste when moved from any premises.
The requirement for the SIC code on the consignment note also will change. The EA currently accept SIC 2003, SIC 2007 or NACE on the consignment note. The change in the Hazardous Waste Regulations from 1 April 2016, specifying SIC 2007, matches the requirements for waste transfer notes (for non-hazardous waste).
The EA currently has a Regulatory Position to allow different SIC publications and the use of NACE codes to be used; they will continue to allow the use of NACE.
The EA is working with gov.uk to get further guidance published as soon as possible and is in the process of contacting all registered producers informing them of the change.
Any queries can be directed to the National Customer Contact Centre (NCCC) (firstname.lastname@example.org) or by telephone on 03708 506 506