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As a waste producer, you have a legal responsibility to ensure that you produce, store, transport and dispose of controlled waste without harming the environment under the Duty of Care legislation.

📍 Do you know if what you’re doing with your waste is legal?

As a waste producer your waste duty of care requirements must include that you take all reasonable steps to:

  • prevent unauthorised or harmful deposit, treatment or disposal of waste.
  • prevent a breach (failure) by any other person to meet the requirement to have an environmental permit, or a breach of a permit condition.
  • prevent the escape of waste from your control.
  • ensure that any person you transfer the waste to has the correct authorisation.
  • provide an accurate description of the waste when it is transferred to another person.

Failure to comply with the duty of care requirements is a criminal offence and could lead to prosecution.

📍 Do you know what the waste duty of care means?

This is called your duty of care. You have a legal responsibility of what you must do to comply with your duty of care for the waste that you generate. Whether a substance or object, waste is determined on a case by case basis. The correct checks must be conducted.

📍 Do you know what records you need to hold and how long for?

There is no legal requirement to keep records when you check a carrier is registered or a site is permitted or exempt, a lack of records does not prove you did not meet your duty of care. However, if your waste is subsequently fly-tipped and investigated by the local authority, records can quickly show that you met your duty of care.

📍 Do you know if the contractors you use are licensed to take your waste and do you know what they do with it?

Duty of care legislation requires that you must transfer to an approved waste provider, and correct records can demonstrate this.

  • record any checks you make, including the operator’s registration, permit or exemption number
  • keep a receipt for the transaction which includes the business details of a registered operator
  • ask for a copy or take a photograph of the carrier’s waste registration or site’s permit
  • record details of the business or of any vehicle used (registration, make, model, colour), which can be linked back to an authorised operator

Duty of care requires that as a waste producer you have a legal responsibility to take all reasonable steps to ensure that when you transfer waste to another waste provider that the waste is managed correctly throughout its complete journey to disposal or recovery.

📍 Would you know if you were committing waste crime????

If you can’t answer these questions there is a pretty good chance you are not operating legally.

Ignorance is no defence!!!!

Case in Defence: A man was convicted recently of running an illegal waste site claimed he didn’t know that what he was doing was illegal. The site was being used by cost-avoiding tradespeople to dispose of rubbish instead of using permitted sites.

The Environment Agency was quoted saying: ‘’It was disappointing to see tradespeople dumping waste here instead of paying to take it to a permitted site like a recycling centre.

Anyone employing a tradesperson for building, gardening or house clearance work has a duty of care to ensure that the person employed is an authorised waste carrier and will be taking any waste produced to a regulated facility. This allows legitimate business to compete on equal terms as well as preventing significant harm to the environment.”

The man pleaded guilty to two charges of running a waste site without a permit and was fined a significant five figure amount (£) by Magistrates and ordered to pay the substantial court costs.

📍 Did you know you have a legal responsibility for your waste to be handled correctly?

Arranging for the handling of your waste without the proper precautions can harm the environment and others own health who may handle it. Make sure you conduct the necessary due diligence to ensure the correct permits and duty-of-care process is in place, before allowing your waste to be dealt with – It is a serious legal offence that is prosecuted against if dealt with incorrectly

That’s why we at PolyBlend take compliance responsibility extremely seriously. We operate and are certified to ISO 14001 Environmental Management System (EMS) to ensure the way we operate our sites and promote safe and ethical working practices are legally compliant, sustainable and minimises the impact on the environment.

As a provider of global polymer solutions, our compliance with ISO14001, as well as our legal and regulatory requirements runs alongside our strong commitment to sustainable practices, which enables us to provide the highest level of environmental standards to our customers.


Published by
Quality & Systems Manager

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