4 June 2019 by Steve Eminton

WRAP guide looks at commercial waste and CA sites

An updated version of a guide relevant to commercial waste and recycling at civic amenity sites/HWRCs has been produced for resources charity WRAP.

The guide notes that collections of commercial and industrial (C&I) waste and recyclable materials are widely available in much of the UK.

The WRAP guide looks at commercial waste at CA sites

It also gives a number of advantages in offering recycling and waste services at a CA site including potentially reducing fly-tipping.

The study says that SMEs wishing to access waste and recycling services require a solution that is convenient, enables them to comply with their legal Duty of Care, and is affordable. “C&I waste and recycling ‘drop-off centres’ can provide additional opportunities for SMEs to recycle specific material streams, by allowing them to deposit materials at a time and a frequency that suits them. These facilities can potentially accept a much wider range of materials compared to a collection system.”


However, the report cautions that the “small quantities and/or types of waste produced by small and medium enterprises/businesses (SMEs) may not suit the types of service being offered locally. The charging systems of collection contractors may also make it uneconomical for SMEs to segregate their recyclables for collection.”

To access the document, click on the link (External)

Some of the content in the study relates to a 2017 a survey which was carried out with the support of the National Association of Waste Disposal Officers, NAWDO. 55 local authorities responded with 15 allowing SMEs access and 39 not allowing them, although not necessarily because they didn’t want to offer a service but potentially because of space restrictions and other factors.

On reducing fly-tipping, the report’s authors say that household waste, white goods, demolition, garden and commercial wastes were found to be most frequently fly-tipped and that: “Improved access to cost effective waste and recycling facilities may help reduce the number of incidents of fly-tipping, and provide a cost benefit to local authorities.”

Charging mechanisms are discussed ranging from charging by weight via a weighbridge through to annual permits and prepaid sacks. Free drop off for recycling was also a provision at some sites and the report said this Legitimises common practice where micro businesses are bringing household-type materials to be recycled.


The report also details the legislation under which civic amenity sites or household waste recycling centres operate.

It notes that: different types of controlled waste are defined according to the type of premises at which they were produced, subject to Schedule 1 of the Controlled Waste (England and Wales) Regulations 2012.

  • Household waste comes from domestic premises, and a few other types of premises such as places of worship and buildings used principally for public meetings.
  • Commercial waste comes from premises that are wholly or mainly used for trade, business, sport or recreation – excluding industrial waste.
  • Industrial waste comes from factories, mines, quarries and a few other types of premises, including agricultural premises and public transport premises. Construction and demolition waste is a type of industrial waste.

A key point, says the WRAP study, for local authorities to note is that whereas waste disposal authorities must allow local residents to deposit most kinds of household waste free of charge, they can open HWRCs for the deposit of ‘household or other controlled waste by other persons on such terms as to payment (if any) as the authority determines’.

The guide, Commercial & Industrial Waste and Recycling Drop-off Centres Guide, is available on the WRAP website as a PDF.

Drawing on case studies from real life, The National Civic Amenity Site Conference on 19 June will explore good practice in household waste and recycling centre (HWRC) management. Click on the image for more details.



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