Applicable EU Legislation
Hazardous waste is controlled by a number of EU Directives, some of which are based on international conventions. The most important ones are listed and explained below.
The most important piece of legislation for our sector is the Waste Framework Directive. The first WFD stems from 1975. Over time, a number of directives have been integrated into the WFD (e.g. the Directive on Hazardous Waste) and it is still being updated regularly. Today the WFD contributes to the circular economy, covering issues like reduction of landfilling, maximisation of recycling, source segregation and decontamination.
The Landfill Directive and the Industrial Emissions Directive (IED) are also of utmost importance to the hazardous waste management sector. The Landfill Directive states that hazardous waste must be stored in separate hazardous waste landfills. The Industrial Emissions Directive (IED) controls industrial emission limits, which also apply to the hazardous waste management sector. Here, they are elaborated via specific BREF (BAT-REFerence) documents.
The EU Waste Shipment Regulation (WSR) lays down requirements for shipments of waste both within the EU and between the EU and third countries. For hazardous waste more stringent rules apply, which are based on compliance with BASEL and OESO requirements.
Since a large portion of waste treated in special haz waste facilities originates from the chemical industry, and returns there when recovered, their legislation (REACH) is also relevant for our industry.