Meaning of waste—recovery operations
Produced in partnership with Dr Anna Willetts of gunnercooke LLP , Leslie Heasman of MJCA and Samantha Riggs of 25 Bedford Row

The following Environment practice note produced in partnership with Dr Anna Willetts of gunnercooke LLP, Leslie Heasman of MJCA and Samantha Riggs of 25 Bedford Row provides comprehensive and up to date legal information covering:

  • Meaning of waste—recovery operations
  • Waste Framework Directive 2008/98/EC (WFD) as amended in 2018
  • Court of Justice of European Union case law
  • List of recovery operations
  • Key principles
  • Waste recovery plan
  • Backfilling operations
  • Recycling

Meaning of waste—recovery operations

Recovery is one of the key waste management elements of the Waste Framework Directive 2008/98/EC as amended by Directive EU 2018/851 of 30 May 2018 (WFD) and together with disposal operations comprise waste treatment, as defined. The correct classification of a waste treatment operation is essential for compliance with the waste hierarchy and other provisions of WFD.

The definition of recovery is also given in paragraph 2 of Part 1 of Schedule 9 to the Environmental Permitting (England and Wales) Regulations 2016, SI 2016/1154 where it is stated that ‘“recovery” as the same meaning as in the waste Framework Directive and related terms are to be construed accordingly’.

Waste Framework Directive 2008/98/EC (WFD) as amended in 2018

EU Directives are adopted by Member States and require Member States to achieve a particular result but are not intended to form part of domestic law.

Principally, the UK’s environmental law is derived from EU law or was directly effective EU law. As a result of Brexit, the European Union (Withdrawal) Act 2018 converts existing EU law which applied directly in the UK’s legal system (such as EU regulations and EU decisions) into UK law (as it applied immediately before IP completion day) and preserves laws made in the UK to implement EU obligations (eg the laws which implement EU Directive). This body of law is known as

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