English beef and sheep producers who wish to continue using tyres
on silage clamps, shredding or burning felled trees, crushing or
cleaning pesticide containers or a whole host of other previously
unregulated activities should register for an exemption under the
new Agricultural Waste Regulations as soon as possible, recommends
the English Beef and Lamb Executive (EBLEX).
The new regulations which came into force this May mean that agriculture
now has to comply with the strict waste management controls applied
to other sectors of UK industry.
While banning the farm burial of all wastes and the burning of
most, the regulations do allow a number of agricultural practices
considered to be waste disposal to continue without a licence.
But producers must register with the Environment Agency before
15 May 2007 for specific licence exemptions.
Foremost amongst the common farm practices identified as requiring
waste disposal licence exemptions are:
- Using waste paper as animal bedding;
- Using tyres on silage clamps;
- Chipping logs and branches from trees and hedges, and shredding
- Clearing mud and debris from streams and ditches and depositing
it on their banks;
- Using a compactor bin to crush waste, baling waste plastic
silage wrap, shredding paper packaging, crushing empty containers
and cleaning empty pesticide containers;
- Burning logs and branches from fallen or felled trees;
- Burning untreated timber from fence mending;
- Burning hedge trimmings, leaves, bark or other plant materials;
- Disposing of diseased or spoiled plant tissues on the farm
of production; and,
- Using building rubble as hard core.
Registering for exemptions is free of charge and the Environment
Agency has tried to make it as simple as possible with tick-box
registration packs. It is, however, concerned that a flood of applications
just ahead of next year's deadline could make it difficult to register
all exemptions in time.
Under these circumstances, EBLEX strongly advises beef and sheep
producers to complete their applications as soon as possible rather
than leaving them to the last minute and risking registration delays
beyond the 15 May 2007 deadline.
Exemption registration packs and advice on completing them can
be obtained by ringing the Environment Agency's dedicated helpline
on 0845 603 3113. Guidance is also available and registration forms
can be downloaded directly from the Agricultural Waste Regulations
website page at www.environment-agency.gov.uk/subjects/waste.
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