EE Estland
  • S20E - Abfälle

Wood chips for use as fuel made from waste

End-of-waste criteria for wood chips used as fuel made from wood waste

The European Union (EU) law distinguishes between the ‘waste regime’ and the ‘production regime’ based on the EU waste law (Waste Framework Directive 2008/98/EC and others). The waste regime means that waste may only be handed over to a person who has a waste permit (or an equivalent permit), a waste report must be submitted on its use and all requirements regulating waste operations must be met. Waste management requirements do not apply when waste is used in the production regime. In general, the products may be handed over and made freely available on the market, taking into account the additional requirements or restrictions imposed on a particular product.

Article 6 of the Waste Framework Directive (2008/98/EC) sets out general ‘end-of-waste’ requirements on the basis of which waste ceases to be waste when it undergoes a recovery operation and the object resulting from it meets particular criteria. The Waste Framework Directive gives the right at both EU and national level to establish end-of-waste criteria directly as part of waste law, in accordance with general principles. These have been established at EU level, for example, for black and non-ferrous scrap and cullet. On the basis of the Waste Act, such end-of-waste rules have been established for compost produced from separately collected bio-waste and digestate from biogas production and products from sewage sludge, as well as oil shale extracted from mining waste, the fuel component made from waste containing oil, and tyre chips added to the shale oil production process.

Introduction of a regulation is necessary in order to provide clarity on the incineration of wood waste and to facilitate the reuse of wood waste as a fuel. The composition of wood waste may vary greatly and it is important that the chemical composition of the wood waste destined for incineration is known and that wood waste is proven to be part of biomass, through laboratory analysis, if necessary. The Regulation establishes safety and quality requirements for wood chips produced from wood waste, taking into account Estonian circumstances, and, if met, wood waste becomes a compliant product. The use of waste for useful purposes is essential to replace natural materials (e.g. wood in the natural state) that would otherwise be used for this purpose.