The change to landfill tax rules made on 1 April 2018 could have significant implications for developers where they re-use soils on site.
Essentially, soil at the point it is excavated is by definition considered to be a waste (in England and Wales). If that soil is then re-used, this is considered to constitute “depositing waste on land”, at which point the site becomes an unregulated landfill. As of 1 April developers are liable to pay landfill tax (plus possibly a fine, which will be enforced by HMRC) where soils are deposited on their site without approval, and the Environment Agency is policing this issue much more rigorously. It should be noted that this is not a change in policy, just a change in the approach to enforcement.
To avoid the pitfalls, developers should produce a Materials Management Plan and have this signed off by a qualified person (QP) who has not had any involvement with the preparing of the risk assessments or remedial strategy on the site. This needs to happen BEFORE SITE DEVELOPMENT WORK COMMENCES. This process is defined by the CL:AIRE Code of Practice, as follows;
CL:AIRE Code of Practice (CoP)
The Code of Practice requires 4 factors to be addressed:
- Protection of human health and protection of the environment needs to be demonstrated
- The soils need to be suitable for use without further treatment
- Certainty of use needs to be established
- The quantity of material being re-used needs to be known from the outset.
In order to satisfy these requirements, the following actions are required;
- Consultation /granting of approval by the Local Authority and Environment Agency
- Risk Assessments to demonstrate that the site does not present an Environmental Hazard
- Remediation Statement for contaminated sites (or design statement for clean sites)
- Materials Management Plan (MMP) which details sources and destinations of all materials
- Volume calculations – i.e. cut and fill balance.
Patrick Parsons are experienced in the process of Materials Management Planning and we have Qualified People (QP’s) in the company who can sign off MMP’s, complying with Environment Agency rules and eliminating the risk of landfill taxes and fines being applied. Find out more about our waste management services.