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Registration, licensing, and labelling obligations under the German Closed Cycle Management Act secs. 53-55 for waste collectors, carriers, dealers and brokers

See the list of authorities for the relevant competent authorities in MV!

The new Closed Cycle Management Act (KrWG) entered force on 1st June 2012. It supersedes the previously existing Closed Substance Cycle and Waste Management Act (KrW-/AbfG).

The obligations of waste collectors, carriers, dealers and brokers among other things are newly regulated in the KrWG. These are substantiated in the Registration and Licensing Ordinance (AbfAEV), which entered into force on 1st June 2014.

Registration obligation under KrWG sec. 53

Since 1st June 2012, collectors, carriers, dealers and brokers of wastes have had to register their businesses' activity to the competent authority before taking up the activity (KrWG sec. 53, para. 1). Companies with a licence under KrWG sec. 54 (see license obligation) are exempt from the registration obligation. Official confirmation of the registration applies nationwide.

Also commercial enterprises the actual activity of which is not oriented toward waste transport and disposal, such as craftsmen, have had to make registration since 1st June 2014. Only commercial enterprises that do not collect or carry more than 20 t of non-hazardous or 2 t of hazardous waste in a calendar year are completely excepted from the registration obligation. (see AbfAEV sec. 7, para. 9; also the Ministry of Economic Affairs' letter about this dated 21st February 2014.)

Requirements imposed on the reliability as well as on the technical qualification and expertise of the business management and personnel are to be obtained from AbfAEV secs. 3, 4, and 6.

Registrations under KrWG, sec. 53 can be submitted as of now via the following portal: www.eAEV-Formulare.de. You then receive an electronic confirmation from the competent authority. If the disclosure is to be submitted in paper form, then the AbfAEV form should be used (English fill-in help for the form, not legally binding).

Carrying along a copy or a printout of the electronically confirmed registration during transport has been mandatory since 1st June 2014. Specialized disposal companies additionally have to carry a copy of the certificate along and EMAS companies a copy of the registration certificate (AbfAEV sec. 13, para. 1).

Licensing obligation under KrWG sec 54

Collectors, carriers, dealers, and brokers of hazardous waste require a licence under KrWG sec. 54, para. 1 or must be certified for the activity requiring a licence as a specialized disposal company.

Certain companies/activities are exempt from the license obligation. Thus AbfAEV sec. 12, among others, provides exemptions for commercial enterprises, operators of EMAS sites, and packet, express and courier services. Activities exempted from the license obligation are however generally subject to the registration obligation (see registration obligation).

Transport approvals issued up until 31st May 2012 under KrW-/AbfG or broker approvals count as licence under the new Closed Cycle Management Act. Temporary approvals are valid but only until their expiry date (KrWG sec. 72, paras. 5 and 6). A registration under KrWG sec. 53 is not required in this respect.

Requirements imposed on the reliability as well as on the technical qualification and expertise of the business management and personnel are to be obtained from AbfAEV secs. 3, 5, and 6.

License applications under KrWG, sec. 54 can be submitted as of now via the following portal: www.eAEV-Formulare.de. If the application is to be submitted in paper form, the AbfAEV form should be used (English fill-in help for the form, not legally binding).

Insofar as the activity is subject to licensing obligation, collectors and carriers of hazardous wastes must carry a copy or a printout of the licence along (AbfAEV sec. 13, para. 2).

Labelling obligation under KrWG sec. 55

Beginning on 1st June 2012, vehicles with which wastes are to be carried on public streets in Germany are to be labelled with two so-called 'A signs' (KrWG sec. 55).

KrWG sec. 55 and AbfAEV sec 13a contain exceptions from the labelling obligation: Collectors and carriers such as workmen acting as part of commercial enterprises (see also Ministry of Economic Affairs notes for managing the A sign) are excepted from the labelling obligation. Public-law parties responsible for waste management are also exempt from the labelling obligation, but not companies contracted by them.

Competent authorities

If a company has its headquarters in Mecklenburg-Vorpommern, the State Offices of Agriculture and Environment (StÄLU) are responsible receiving the registration under KrWG sec. 53 or for issuing a licence under KrWG sec. 54 (Waste Competency Ordinance M-V sec. 2, no. 1; see Competent authorities in Mecklenburg-Vorpommern).

For foreign companies, the authority in whose district the collection, carrying, dealing, or brokerage is first undertaken is competent (AbfAEV sec. 7, para. 2 or sec. 9, para. 2).

For instance if a Polish shipper having no branches in Germany carries wastes from Poland to Germany and his first border crossing is in Pomellen or Linken, then the Staatliche Amt für Landwirtschaft und Umwelt Mecklenburgische Seenplatte, Dienststelle Neubrandenburg (Mecklenburg Lake District's State Office of Agriculture and Environment in Neubrandenburg) is competent. For a Swedish shipper without branches in Germany crossing the border in the Rostock harbour, the Staatliche Amt für Landwirtschaft und Umwelt Mittleres Mecklenburg, Dienststelle Rostock (Central Mecklenburg State Office for Agriculture and Environment in Rostock) is competent.

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