Germany – A controversial waste law drafted in Germany has caused uproar within the country’s Bundesverband Sekundärrohstoffe und Entsorgung (BVSE), the trade association representing the interests of private waste management firms.
According to the BVSE, the proposed new law – intended to implement the revised EU Waste Framework Directive – will ultimately hand municipalities almost absolute control over waste management activities in their areas. Indeed, the trade association has decided to file a complaint with the European Commission.
If the draft is accepted, the BVSE warns private firms will only be able to collect and recover waste if the municipalities themselves choose not to conduct such activities, or if the firms can prove their quality standards are much higher. Furthermore, the BVSE has voiced serious concerns about the fact that these particular standards still have not been defined.
Just last year, the European waste association FEAD raised similar concerns, stating that unfair competition between public and private waste operators remains a significant problem in several countries, including Germany. It also warned that the preferential treatment given to the public sector is hindering both the innovation and investment needed to realise more modern facilities in the recycling sector.