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Revised Waste Framework Directive

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The Revised Waste Framework Directive aims to promote waste prevention, more recycling and better use of resources and protecting our health and the environment.

We consulted on bringing the revised Waste Framework Directive (rWFD) into law in England and Wales. The consultation can be found on the right hand side of this page.

Visit:  Revised Waste Framework Directive (external link)

The Waste (England and Wales) Regulations 2011 and the Waste (Miscellaneous Provisions) (Wales) Regulations 2011 came into force on 29 March 2011. These regulations bring the rWFD into law in Wales. They make changes to other Welsh regulations and revoke the Environmental Protection (Duty of Care) (Amendment) (Wales) Regulations 2003.

The Waste (Miscellaneous Provisions) (Wales) Regulations 2011 makes changes to existing regulations bilingually. This was needed because the originals were bilingual.

Visit: The Waste (England and Wales) Regulations 2011 (SI 2011 No. 988) (external link)

Visit: Waste (Miscellaneous Provisions) (Wales) Regulations 2011 (SI 2011 No. 971 (W.141)) (external link) 

Judicial review proceedings were brought in relation to the way the 2011 Regulations transposed the requirements of the rWFD relating to the separate collection of waste (dealt with in Articles 10 and 11 of that Directive). We jointly consulted with the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra) on proposals to amend the 2011 Regulations. The consultation can be found on the right hand side of this page. Following the consultation, the Waste (England and Wales) (Amendment) Regulations 2012 were laid on 19 July and come into force on 1 October 2012.

Visit: Legislation website (external link)

Under the Waste Framework Directive, certain wastes stop being waste when it has undergone a recovery (including recycling) operation and complies with criteria. These include:

  • the substance or object is commonly used for specific purposes 
  • there is an existing market or demand for the substance or object
  • the use is lawful (substance or object fulfils the technical requirements for the purpose and meets the existing legislation and standards)
  • the use will not lead to overall adverse environmental or human health impacts.
Criteria are set for specific materials by the European Commission using the procedure described in the Waste Framework Directive (called "comitology").

The European Commission has used this procedure to introduce End-of-waste criteria for Aluminium and ferrous scrap metal.

Visit: Council Regulation 2011/333 establishing when certain types of scrap metal (aluminium and iron & steel) cease to be waste (external link, pdf)

For more information on the national end-of-waste criteria (Quality Protocols) please see the Environment Agency’s website.

Visit: national end-of-waste criteria (Quality Protocols): Environment Agency’s website (external link)

The European Commission Decision of 18 November 2011 sets the rules and calculation methods for compliance with the targets set in Article 11(2) of the revised Waste Framework Directive. The decision can be seen on the Commission's website.

Visit: European Commission Decision of 18 November 2011 (external link)