Know the key implications of the entry into force of RD 180/2015 in Catalonia

The entry into force of Royal Decree 180/2015 of 13 March, which regulates the shipment of waste within the territory of the State, which came into force last May, is generating controversy in the waste management sector, as it implies a significant increase in the documentation to be processed for shipment and as a result an increase in the cost of the waste to be managed, which can be very important for waste that is generated in small quantities.

In Catalonia, these are the main implications of the entry into force of this Royal Decree:

The figure of the shipment operator appears, as the person responsible for notifying the competent administration of the shipment of waste.
The figure of the treatment contract appears, which is compulsory for any shipment of waste.
Modifications are made to the documentation to be processed in order to ship waste.
1. The shipment operator: 

"Is the natural or legal person who intends to ship or have waste shipped for treatment, and on whom the obligation to notify the shipment falls" as established in the definition of Royal Decree 180/2015.

Who can act as an operator?

The producer, the intermediate manager/storer, the dealer or the agent. In case the operator is unknown, the holder of the waste is considered as such.

The concepts of dealer and agent are defined in Law 22/2011 of 28 July 2011 on waste and contaminated soils as follows:

Dealer: any natural or legal person who acts on their own account in the purchase and subsequent sale of waste, including dealers who do not take physical possession of the waste.

Broker: any natural or legal person who arranges for the recovery or disposal of waste on behalf of others, including brokers who do not take physical possession of the waste.      

The main differences between the two are that the dealer acts on his own account, buying and selling waste between the producer (from whom he buys) and the manager (to whom he sells); whereas the broker acts on behalf of a third party, simply arranging the shipment of the waste from the point of origin or generation to the point of final treatment.

Neither the dealer nor the waste broker are waste managers, i.e. they cannot carry out specific treatment of waste, but they are allowed to act as operators in the management of hazardous and non-hazardous waste.

Therefore, both acting as operators will be responsible for notifying the relevant administration of the shipment of waste.

2. The treatment contract

This is a private legal document between the shipment operator and the company or entity carrying out the intermediate or final treatment of the waste.

This contract must be drawn up prior to any shipment and must include the specifications of the waste to be shipped, the conditions and frequency of shipments, the treatment of the waste and the obligations of the parties in the event of incidents.

It should be noted that there are different types of contracts depending on whether the operator is the producer itself or an intermediary. There are 3 types of contract:

Between the producer and the waste manager.
Between the producer and the intermediary (e.g. an agent or dealer).
Between the intermediary and the waste manager.
The content for all 3 cases would be the same, differing only in the origin and destination of the waste.

 3. Modifications to the documentation to be processed

Formalise a treatment contract for all shipments between waste manager and waste shipment operator (a single contract can be made for all waste between the same operator and waste manager).
Have an identification document for all waste removed. This document is replaced by a tracking sheet or itinerant tracking sheet, if the Catalan Decree 93/1999 already required it, as they are equivalent to the identification document. As at the national level, for shipments of non-hazardous waste destined for recovery, a delivery note or equivalent document will be accepted as a valid identification document as long as it contains the required information.
The Catalan acceptance form is equivalent to the prior notification, but is now valid for 3 years (instead of 5 years as before). Therefore, in cases where an acceptance form was already required, prior notification will not be necessary.
 Of course, prior notification will be required in the following cases:

Hazardous waste not requiring an acceptance form according to the Catalan Decree 93/1999 on waste management procedures.
Wastes destined for disposal operations that do not need an acceptance form according to the Catalan Decree 93/1999 on waste management procedures.
Mixed household waste (LER 200301) destined for recovery.
Waste destined for incineration facilities classified as recovery (R1/V61).
*As at national level, only non-hazardous waste destined for recovery and not exceeding 20 kg per shipment is exempt from prior notification.

We know that you probably still have doubts, so if you need advice to process your treatment contract or you want to register as a waste agent or dealer, do not hesitate to contact us. We will do the paperwork for you! Let us be your environmental department!