What are the latest developments concerning environmental legislation globally? We’ve picked out some highlights for you for October 2021.

Rapporteur proposes over 200 amendments to the EU Battery Regulation

Simona Bonafé, the rapporteur in the European Parliament’s Committee on the Environment, Public Health and Food Safety (ENVI) has published her draft report on the new EU Battery Regulation.

The report contains more than 200 proposals for concrete amendments to the proposal released by the European Commission.

Some of the amendments are in line with the proposals from Landbell Group company, European Recycling Platform (ERP) which is closely accompanying the legislative process. For more information on ERP’s proposals, see article from the September issue of COMPASS.

Among other things, the rapporteur proposes to modify the definitions of portable and industrial batteries. The draft report also proposes creating a new category of batteries for light means of transport as this represents a specific and growing market. This fifth battery category would apply principles and targets that are similar to the portable batteries category.

The report does not address the heavily discussed topic of changing the base for the collection targets from put-on-market to available for collection.

Work on the Battery Regulation is also progressing in the Committees on Industry, Transport, and Internal Market and Consumer Protection. There, in addition to the draft reports of the respective rapporteurs, the other committee members have also tabled draft amendments.

The Industry Committee has already voted on the proposal. The other two committees are scheduled to vote on 1 and 9 December respectively.

ENVI plans to wrap up the Battery Regulation in January 2022, before the Parliament’s Plenary one month later.

This means that the French Council Presidency will have the lead in the upcoming trialogue negotiations, taking over from the Slovenian Presidency on 1 January.

EPR guidelines delayed

The work on the guidelines for the implementation of the minimum requirements for extended producer responsibility (EPR) schemes has been put on hold – as Landbell Group company, European Recycling Platform (ERP) was recently told by a representative of the European Commission.

In view of more urgent tasks such as the implementation of the Green Deal and the “Fit for 55” package, the European Commission currently does not have the capacity to devote the necessary attention to the EPR guidelines. It is not clear when the work can be continued and when the guidelines will be published.

The guidelines are intended to support the Member States with their implementation of the minimum criteria on EPR schemes referred to in the Directive’s Article 8a.

Besides supporting the member states, the guidelines also aim to harmonize related design requirements like the criteria and mechanism for the modulation of financial contributions.

Other aspects covered in the planned guidance are combatting freeriding with a focus on online sales, assuring equal treatment of producers, and reaching the right necessary cost level for EPR services.

ERP is engaging in this important topic by providing input from related research studies: for example, the study that it commissioned from Adelphi (read study here).

German Packaging Act: first new changes in force

The first changes to the amendment of the German Packaging Act (VerpackG) came into force on 3 July 2021. Further changes will follow in the course of 2022.

One of the areas affected is “packaging that is not subject to system participation”.

What is “packaging that is not subject to system participation” and what changes result from the amendment to the Packaging Act?

 Here are some examples:

  • Transport packaging: this packaging facilitates the handling and transport of goods by avoiding direct contact with the goods and transport damage (in commerce). It is typically not intended to be passed on to end consumers. Classic examples are pallets or bulk packaging.
  • Sales and outer packaging which, after use, typically are not generated as waste for private end consumers: Classic examples are sales or secondary packaging intended for commercial or industrial enterprises, such as large commercial packaging, export packaging, etc.
  • Sales and secondary packaging for which system participation is not possible due to pollutant and/or health risks during recycling.
  • Sales packaging of pollutant-containing filling goods
  • Reusable packaging: this is designed and intended to be reused several times for the same purpose after use, and their actual return and reuse is made possible by adequate logistics and encouraged by suitable incentive systems, usually deposits.

Do you handle “packaging that is not subject to system participation”? Landbell has summarized all the important information for you here and will be happy to support you in preparing to meet the new packaging law obligations.

If you need support, please contact us for a non-binding offer.


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