European Environmental Law

Introduction The amount of waste has continued to swell in many European countries. The volume of municipal waste arising from these countries is huge and keeps on growing. However, the amounts of hazardous waste produced in many of European countries have decreased though, not in all counties since other European countries has seen an increase in their hazardous waste. In other instances, the increase has been because of alterations in definitions of hazardous waste. Landfills have remained as the main way of disposing waste, though a number of countries are trying to recycle their waste.

Initiatives aimed at promoting waste prevention as well as waste recycling is seen as the best approaches to minimize environmental risks and expenses related with production of waste, its treatment as well as its disposal. However, to address this issue the European commission has formulated environmental laws to manage waste disposal. The problem is that, the European waste management law in general and the European definition of ‘waste’ in particular, is a complete mess.

To address this subject, the study paper will carry on along the following field: waste management problem will be outlined for reasons of theoretical clarity; European Commission definition of waste, its interpretation and waste discarding, will be underscored; and the European waste management law, the centre of the paper, will be discussed at length; and lastly “the way forward” in terms of a conclusion will be provided Waste management problem Waste management problem can be perceived in a number of ways. One way is to see waste as a source of pollution.

As Lee states, in a general manner a big percentage of pollution comprises introduction of substances which people wishes to get rid of into the environment . These aspects represent the initial justification for enacting laws to control waste disposal. Many of the rules on international bodies including the European Union are aimed at controlling disposal of waste instead or aiming at prevention of waste generation. Definition of waste by the EC The European Union Commission concerned on Waste Framework Directive 75/442/EEC offers the lawful description of waste.

Waste definition by EU is inseparably connected with European Union’s lists of waste categories as well as waste types. According to the EC Council Directive 75/442/EEC on waste, which was amended by Council Directive 91/156/EEC, Article. 1 (a) it states that: • “Waste shall mean any substance or object in the categories set out in Annex I which the holder discards or intends or is required to discard. The Commission has drawn up a list of wastes belonging to the categories listed in Annex I”.