New legislation, client and shareholder pressure and the cost of waste disposal is forcing companies to examine the disposal routes of their waste.
The EU and UK Governments have introduced measures over the last decade to substantially reduce landfill levels. Mercury Recycling would like to highlight the current and future positions with regard to new legislation and how this will affect your organisation in respect of waste disposal either by you or your subcontractors.

How legislation will affect your organisation.

Certain wastes are categorised as 'Hazardous' (see European Waste Catalogue) and as such can only go to a suitably licensed recycling facility, or to a landfill site authorised to take the relating category of Hazardous Waste. End of life lamps and tubes and crushed lamp debris, containing mercury or sodium are such wastes and in addition also classified as Waste Electrical and Electronic Equipment (WEEE) and therefore have to be recycled under the respective Directive.

Previous to the above the introduction of the Hazardous Waste Regulations in England and Wales in July 2005 introduced additional major changes for companies producing Hazardous Waste.

The new regulations introduced were:-

  • End of pre-notification requirement - previously 72 hours notice to the Environment Agency was required before special waste as it was known as could be moved. (NB requirement remains in Scotland and Northern Ireland)
  • Hazardous waste producers must give notification (effectively a registration) to the Environment Agency. There are exemptions from the requirement to notify if certain business types produce less than 500kg each year. This does not exempt these premises from other requirements of the regulations. This however is expected to end 1/4/16.
  • Hazardous waste must be consigned when it leaves the producers premises. A consignment note must accompany the waste detailing the producer's details (including a unique code provided on notification) along with details of the wastes.
  • The receiving site (consignee) will make quarterly returns to the Environment Agency detailing the types, quantities and origin of wastes received during that quarter.
  • Consignee to keep records of where on site wastes are deposited or stored
  • Ban on mixing - the regulations establish a responsibility on the holder of hazardous waste (the producer of the waste or the person who is in possession of it) not to mix hazardous waste (with either another category of hazardous waste or with non-hazardous waste) unless part of a production or a licensed process.
  • Requirement to separate - a duty is also placed on the holder to separate mixed waste where technically and economically feasible (further guidance on technically and economically feasible is expected).
  • In 2009 the European wide Battery Directive also came into force in the UK and waste portable batteries must be collected and treated by a suitably licensed treatment facility.


The Mercury Recycling Group offer a comprehensive mainland UK wide service with a variety of storage solutions to meet your Lamp and Battery Recycling legal requirements.

Why choose Mercury Recycling?

With UK designed state of the art lamp recycling equipment, together with full environmental accreditation, we offer a complete solution for your Lamp and Battery Recycling needs. Specialised packages are tailored to clients needs with substantial discounts available for larger volumes . Note, companies that operate lamp crushing machines on site will, as a result of current and future legislation, encounter possible permitting requirements for their operation and will have to transfer the debris to a suitably licenced facility for further treatment. The Mercury Group however, utilise technology which recovers the glass, metals and mercury for re-use by lamp manufactures and other industries all under the one roof; there are no stages of treatment on a clients site.