4 September 2019 by Will Date

Biffa contests Agency export charges

Biffa Waste Services is to contest charges brought against it by the Environment Agency relating to the export of mixed paper to Asia.

The company is due to be sentenced at Wood Green Crown Court on 27 September after having been found guilty this summer of breaching waste export regulations in relation to mixed paper sent to China in 2015 (see letsrecycle.com story).

Wood Green

Sentencing in the case between Biffa and the Environment Agency, is due later this month

However, Biffa has said today that it has applied for leave to appeal the judgement.

Further proceedings were brought by the Environment Agency relating to exports of material to India and Indonesia, to which the company entered a not guilty plea at Highbury Corner Magistrates’ Court last week. The case has been sent to Wood Green Crown Court, with a hearing also scheduled for 27 September, and Biffa says it will strongly contest the case.

In a statement, the company repeated its call for the Agency to issue guidance on acceptable levels of purity for exported mixed paper, stating that it had been ‘encouraged’ by support from the industry on the issue (see letsrecycle.com story).

Contest

In its statement, Biffa said: “Biffa has entered a not guilty plea to the charges made in relation to shipments of recycled paper to Indonesia and India between October 2018 and February 2019. We will strongly contest this case and believe the prosecution’s statement contains factual inaccuracies.

“The Environment Agency (EA) has previously visited the facilities in question when identical recycled paper was produced for export, without complaint. We have also made an application for leave to appeal the court judgement of June 20, 2019 regarding recycled paper exports to China.

“Biffa maintains that the EA needs to issue clear guidance to the industry as to what are the acceptable levels of purity for UK exported mixed paper. We are encouraged by the support we have received from across the industry for our position on this matter.”

The Environment Agency has been contacted for comment.

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