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German parliament approves stricter rules for waste shipments

Germany will strengthen enforcement of illegal shipments of waste. With the new rules the federal states are required to intensify their enforcement as of January 2017.

According to the new law German federal states are required to establish a separate maintenance plan for waste shipments abroad. The reversed burden of proof is introduced: there is an illegal shipment as long as no sufficient evidence on the legality of the transfer is submitted. Furthermore, the Federal Environment Agency is obliged to publish and monitor all illegal shipments. Criminal penalties and fines will be introduced for violations.

On September 20, the Bundestag approved the proposal by the German government to tighten the WSR (Waste Shipment Regulations) enforcement. By this new law Germany laid down the EU Directive on the criminal environmental offenses in its national legislation. Click to read the "Änderung abfallverbringungsrechtlicher Vorschriften" from Deutscher Bundestag.

The evaluation of the current law in Germany showed that the sanctions were not sufficient and led to problems. With the new law, the German government wants to fix this and thereby increase legal certainty.

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