Commercial Waste Ordinance

The Commercial Waste Ordinance (GewAabfV) stipulates that commercial enterprises already separate their waste, such as paper, wood, glass and metals, at the point of origin in order to ensure the highest possible recycling of the waste. It does not apply to waste that is subject to the Electrical and Electronic Equipment Act or the Battery Act (§ 1 (4) of the Ordinance).

The new GewAbfV entered into force on 1 August 2017. Among other things, the amendment aims to strengthen the separate collection of recyclable waste and thus improve recycling. This leads to waste producers to extended separate collection and documentation obligations. In the area of municipal solid waste, wood, textiles and all biowaste must now be recorded separately in addition to paper, cardboard, cardboard, plastics, glass and metals. This must be documented accordingly and submitted to the competent authority upon request. The documentation is to be made through site plans, photographs, practice documents, such as delivery or weight notes or similar documents.

In addition, the waste producer must provide a declaration from the transferee of the waste that proves that the separately collected waste has been sent for recycling. In the event that a separate collection is not technically possible or economically unreasonable for the waste producer, it is exceptionally permitted to collect mixed waste. This waste mixture must in any case be supplied to a commercial waste pretreatment plant. For construction and demolition waste, the ordinance also defines extended segregation and documentation requirements.

The aim is to reduce waste incineration (thermal waste treatment) in commercial waste (currently around six million tons per year). The current recycling rate of 7 percent is expected to increase to at least 30 percent.

From the separate holding can then be waived if the waste mixture is demonstrably fed to an approved Abfallortieranlage in which the waste is separated and then sent for recovery.

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