Latest update on the Waste Treatment BREF review

Update on plant specific data collation

In July 2014 the EIPPC Bureau (JRC-IPTS) launched a plant-specific data collation which will be used to draw Best Available Techniques and define BAT AELs (emission levels) for the waste sector (including the biowaste sector). 

36 biowaste treatment plants initially volunteered from the UK to participate in the data collation, of which 19 composting plants, 15 AD plants and 2 MBT plants. 

The data collation is now closed.  A total of 25 biowaste plants have actually participated from the UK, of which: 

• 16 aerobic treatments (8 In-vessel composting and 8 Open air windrow composting)
• 6 AD 
• 3 MBT 

I would like to thank very much those operators who have participated in this time consuming exercise and also Howard Leberman (EA) who has co-ordinated the data collation. 

The Chairman of the WT BREF biological sub-group Unico Van Kooten reported that a total of 35 aerobic treatment installations in Europe. In terms of anaerobic treatment installations, only 16 have participated. To date Germany, Italy and France, which were supposed to be the countries with most plants, have provided very little data.

One point to make is that the data from the UK shows little or no point source releases and/or monitoring.  Monitoring required is driven by distance to sensitive receivers and permit conditions; and it is unlikely that such data can be used for the purposes of setting BAT AELs.

What’s next

Data will be processed by the EIPPC Bureau (the JRC) over the next months and used to draw conclusions of what represent BAT and the BAT-AELs. The methodology that will be used to assess the data and draw BAT conclusions is unfortunately unknown at the moment.  

At the last meeting of the biological treatment group hosted by REA in London a subgroup of experts was set up and tasked with summarising the data and interpreting them. The main aim of this work is to pre-empt as much as possible the EIPPC Bureau’s data assessment and conclusions. The sub-group includes Howard Leberman (EA) and myself from the UK. I will endeavour to keep you informed on this process. 

If you need any clarification, please don't hesitate to contact Kiara (, 07717 294793). 

Last update: 14/11/2014

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