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Waste – disposal

Transfer to authorised collectors/processors

Traders who are not authorised to process waste accordingly are legally obliged to transfer waste to a party authorised to collect or process waste. The same applies for traders that are authorised to process waste accordingly but are not able to do so. This transfer must be done promptly enough to ensure that public interests are not negatively affected.

Caution

In general, these rules also apply for traders from EU Member States that have their registered office in Austria.

Waste must be transferred in good time so as not to prejudice public interest – at least once every 36 months – to a party authorised to collect or process waste for collection or treatment.

Small business in particular (e.g. offices) will generally only produce municipal waste. In this case, the waste can be disposed of in exactly the same way as household waste. The communal removal of municipal waste is regulated by federal province law and differs from province to province.

Caution

Waste may generally only be transferred to parties that are authorised to collect or process this waste, i.e. only to collectors or processor that have a  special permit as per the Abfallwirtschaftsgesetz 2002  or to to such transferees who are expressly exempted from permits by the Waste Management Act 2002 (e.g. "permit-free transferees"). Records must be kept regarding these transfers of waste.

Traders that reliably process their own waste in their own facilities must make a report to the governor (annual waste balance).

Please note

Only if the hazardous waste generated in the company is comparable in terms of the type and quantity with the hazardous waste usually generated in private households is considered to be problematic material and can also be handed over to the municipality’s problematic waste collection centre.

Take-back of waste by trade

Original waste producers also meet their legal obligation to transfer waste lawfully, if they return waste to those legal entities (traders) from whom they were purchased as (part of the) goods.

As a take-back firm that does not require permission, the trader does not require any special entitlement to transfer the waste if they meet the following conditions:

  • they deliver goods commercially and take back waste from these or similar goods in order to deliver them to an authorised waste collector, i.e. they do not process the collected waste themselves and
  • the quantity of hazardous waste taken back is not disproportionately greater than the quantity of goods delivered. They must keep a record relating to this and present this to the administrative authority if requested to do so.

Caution

The waste taken back must only be transferred by the party taking back the waste (trader) to authorised persons (in the case of hazardous waste, the accompanying document must also be observed).

Responsibility for the full recovery or disposal of the waste

Waste holders must transfer the waste to an authorised waste collector or waste processor for the collection or processing of the waste type in question and to explicitly instruct them to recover or dispose of this waste in an environmentally friendly manner. If these conditions are not met, the waste holder continues to bear responsibility for the waste and can be tasked with a processing contract as the obliged entity.

Please note

By submitting a request to the competent body or by requesting to view details in the public register on the EDM portal, the waste holder can ensure that the waste collector or waste processor has the relevant entitlement. It must be possible to provide documentary evidence of the instruction of environmentally friendly recovery or environmentally friendly disposal; this can be done by way of a written contract, for example.

Further links

Legal basis

Translated by the European Commission
last update: 18 February 2021

responsible for content: Federal Ministry for Climate Action, Environment, Energy, Mobility, Innovation and Technology

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