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WASTE CONTROLS AND ACCREDITATION OF PACKAGING WASTE REPROCESSORS

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No Change before European Court decides Mayer Parry Case, says Mullin ...
No Change before European Court decides Mayer Parry Case, says Mullin

There will be no change either to the operation of waste management

controls or to the current accreditation policy for packaging waste

reprocessors until the European Court has reached a judgement on the

'Mayer Parry' case, environment minister Chris Mullin confirmed

today.

The judicial review of a decision of the Environment Agency not to

accredit Mayer Parry Recycling Limited as a reprocessor for the

purposes of the packaging Regulations was heard before Mr Justice

Collins on 7/8 September. The secretary of state for the

environment, transport and the regions intervened in the proceedings.

At the hearing, Mr Justice Collins decided to adjourn the case so it

could be referred to the European Court of Justice. However, it might

take around 18-24 months for the European Court to hand down its

ruling.

Mr Mullin said:

'This case raises important issues which can only be resolved with

the assistance of a ruling by the European Court of Justice.

'We want to avoid uncertainty for businesses affected by either waste

management controls or the packaging Regulations and to ensure

clarity about the arrangements that will apply in the interim period.

Until the matter is resolved by the Court, therefore, there will be

no change to either the operation of waste management controls or to

the current policy on the accreditation of packaging waste

reprocessors.'

NOTES

Mayer Parry Recycling Ltd. applied for a judicial review of a decision by the Environment Agency not to accredit it as a reprocessor for the

purposes of the Producer Responsibility Obligations (Packaging Waste)

Regulations 1997 (as amended). The secretary of state for the

environment, transport and the regions intervened in the case, and it

was heard on 7/8 September before Mr Justice Collins.

Under the EC Directive on Packaging and Packaging Waste 94/62/EC,

member states must meet certain recovery and recycling targets by

2001. The Directive includes definitions of 'recovery' and

'recycling'.

The Producer Responsibility Obligations (Packaging Waste) Regulations

1997 came into force in 1997 and transpose certain elements of the

Packaging Waste Directive. The Regulations place obligations on

certain businesses (above the threshold levels of£2m turnover

and 50 tonnes of packaging handled) to recover and recycle specific

tonnages of packaging waste based on the amount of packaging handled

and the position of the business in the packaging chain (for example,

manufacturer or retailer).

The Waste Management Licensing Regulations 1994 transpose the

definition of waste in Article 1(a) of the Waste Framework Directive

(75/442/EEC) as amended. The Judicial Review follows declarations

made by the High Court on 18 December 1998 (Mayer Parry Recycling

Ltd. v The Environment Agency (CH 1997 M 2722) about scrap metal and

the definition of waste under the Framework Directive.

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