The Environment Agency has set about mobilising to help operators of Materials Recovery Facilities (MRF) that are likely to qualify as Materials Facilities (MF) by sending a letter detailing what will happen next.
Qualifying MRFs will need to notify the EA and prepare sampling and reporting arrangements for the first reporting quarter starting October 2014.
Because only the operator will know if they qualify, the EA has said that it is down to them to notify the EA.
The letter draws attention to a new Schedule, which will impose sampling and reporting requirements from October 2014 for those that qualify. The letter has been sent to MRFs the EA believes that are “likely” to qualify.
The government revealed in February that mandatory quality requirements for all MRFs handling over 1000 tonnes of dry recyclate per annum will be introduced from October 2014.
The Letter in full reads:
“We are drawing your attention to new sampling and reporting obligations which will apply to you from 1 October 2104. If your Material Recycling Facility qualifies, the permit will be automatically varied by a new Schedule 9A of the Environmental Permitting (England and Wales) Regulations 2010,The change is intended to bring more transparency to the sorting and recycling of household wastes.
“The Schedule introduces the requirements directly into the environmental permit of MRFs which receive mixed waste and sort this into two or more target materials for recycling. These are known as Materials Facilities (MFs) under the Schedule.
“Mixed waste is waste from households, or from other sources but similar to household waste, and made up in greatest proportion of two or more of paper, glass, plastic or metals mixed together. Target materials are glass, metals, paper and plastics sorted for recycling. MFs need to assess if they qualify for sampling, recording and reporting. MFs will qualify if the facility expects to receive 1000t or more of mixed waste in a 12 month period. If the MF qualifies then the operator must notify us. The new requirements will not apply to: MRFs handling only one of the waste types; sites that are not specifically equipped for sorting (eg civic amenity sites); ‘dirty’ MRFs treating residual wastes; Refuse Derived Fuel plants; WEEE facilities or sites sorting dry recyclate from construction & demolition waste.
“MFs that qualify from October 2014 will need to:
- notify us at MFregs@environment-agency.gov.uk as soon as possible and at the latest by the end of December 2014. The obligation to notify is a permit condition imposed directly by the Regulations. We can advise on the criteria if you are in any doubt.
“We have produced an email template to help you notify. Click this link: MF Notification Email to open the e-mail, complete the required information and send it to us. Alternatively you can create your own e-mail. If you do this, when notifying please put “Notification” followed by the site name in the subject line. In the text you must give: permit number, operator name, site name, site address including post code and your contact details, including a telephone number in case we need to check anything with you.
- make the preparations necessary to sample input waste and sorted recyclates in accordance with guidance
- start sampling and record the results from October 2014
- report the information to us by end of January 2015 and quarterly thereafter.
“The information you report to us will be published in an online database being provided by WRAP (Waste and Resources Action Programme).
“You can find links to the Regulations, guidance and other useful information on the WRAP web site at www.wrap.org.uk/content/sorting-materials-materials-recovery-facilities-mrfs.
“We will visit qualifying Materials Facilities to provide advice and inspect sampling and reporting arrangements.
“Also, we are consulting on an annual charge of £2,240 to cover the costs of our additional work at https://consult.environment-agency.gov.uk/portal/ho/finance/recoveryfacilities/recoverycharges “