The new waste and soil law 7/2022 brings Spain into line with EU directives

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The enactment of the new waste and soil law 7/2022 aims to bring Spain into full compliance with European Union directives, in response to the fight against climate change and environmental protection. 

The law establishes the principles of the circular economy and the reduction of mass consumption of products that cannot be given a second life. 

Its wording is based on the old law of 28/2011, implementing and incorporating new features. 

The law continues the basic criterion of the By-product and the end of the condition of waste, with the exception that now the Autonomous Community is given the power to apply it. Until now, this control weapon was in the hands of the State and the European Union. 

It includes the prevention of waste generation, setting two milestones: by 2025 the aim is to reduce waste by 13% and by 2030 the target is 15%. To achieve this, the administrations have a key role in establishing measures. These measures are set out in Article 18 and include: encouraging reuse, identifying the products that are the biggest sources of waste, promoting the use of by-products, etc. 

It establishes the prohibition of the final disposal or destruction of waste that has not been sold and includes in its text the reduction of single-use products, with measures such as the full provision of drinking water in establishments. 

The obligations of waste managers are regulated, establishing the subscription of bonds and insurance for those who handle dangerous goods and limiting the negotiators for the management of hazardous and non-hazardous waste with a positive value. 

The obligations of initial producers and other holders are regulated, extending the responsibility to the complete treatment of the waste. 

The principle of extended producer or holder responsibility is reinforced, based on the "polluter pays" principle. It establishes as a producer any person who processes, treats, manufactures or sells.

It includes the obligations of the product producer, establishing measures such as the design of the product, the establishment of deposit and return of the product for reuse, total or partial responsibility for its management and the assumption of financial responsibility for its management. 

Compliance with the obligations on the part of the product producer establishes financial and organisational obligations that may be fulfilled individually or by a collective system. 

The new law incorporates fiscal measures, through the indirect application of a tax on the use of non-reusable packaging, taxing both the manufacture and the import or intra-Community acquisition of the same. The tax rate established for its application is 0.45 EUR/KGS. 

It includes those products that will be taxed, such as: non-reusable plastic packaging, semi-finished plastic products intended for the production of packaging and products containing plastics intended for the closure, marketing or presentation of non-reusable packaging. 
 

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