Guidance

Guidance on applying the waste hierarchy

This guidance is for any business or public body which generates, handles or treats waste.

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Many businesses are unaware of how significantly waste impacts on their bottom line. As the demand for materials grows worldwide, raising input costs, it makes sense for businesses to adopt the waste hierarchy.

Article 4 of the revised EU Waste Framework Directive (Directive 2008/98/EC) sets out five steps for dealing with waste, ranked according to environmental impact - the ‘waste hierarchy’.

This guidance is for any business or public body which generates, handles or treats waste.

It sets out:

  • what the waste hierarchy is (Section 1);
  • how it works for a range of common materials and products (Section 2);
  • what businesses and public bodies need to do (Section 3)
  • key questions and ideas for dealing with waste in line with the hierarchy (Section 4).

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