Some wastes have special controls on their handling, transport and disposal.
The Waste Management Licensing (England and Wales) Regulations 2006 came into force in England on 15 May 2006, bringing farm-derived wastes into line with other industries. These regulations were then included under the Environmental Permitting Regulations (England and Wales) Regulations 2010.
The regulations were introduced to satisfy the EC Waste Framework Directive and Groundwater Directive.
The key issues are:
- Burying waste and using farm dumps and tips is prohibited unless a Waste Management Licence has been obtained. All existing tips should have ceased operation from 15 May 2006
- Burning non-natural waste is prohibited, including burning plastic wrap, feed bags etc.
- Wastes can be stored on farm for a period of up to 12 months. Non-hazardous wastes can be stored for up to three years for recycling or recovery
- Waste has to be transferred to an authorised site or contractor for disposal or recycling. Duty of Care applies. Transfer notes must be issued for each handover of waste. Records must be kept demonstrating that this has occurred
- Farmers are able to transport waste derived from their own holdings to licensed sites without needing to become a fully registered waste carrier
- All records must be kept for a minimum period of two years
- Producers of Hazardous Waste where the annual quantity of each waste exceeds 500kg have to register with the Environment Agency and notify them of each transfer. Hazardous waste includes waste oil, batteries and building material containing asbestos such as asbestos cement
- Manure and slurry are not regarded as waste if they are spread on land for agricultural benefit and not in excess.
New regulations introduced on 6 April 2010 changed the system of waste exemptions. Farm based exemptions registered before this date expired on 30 September 2013.