Govt Notifies New Battery Waste Management Rules
In order to ensure environmentally sound management of waste batteries, the Government has released the Battery Waste Management Rules, 2022, replacing the Batteries (Management and Handling) Rules, 2001.
August 26, 2022. By Manu Tayal
The scope of new rules includes all types of batteries, viz. electric vehicle (EV) batteries, portable batteries, automotive batteries, and industrial batteries.
The rules function based on the concept of Extended Producer Responsibility (EPR) where the producers (including importers) of batteries are responsible for the collection and recycling/refurbishment of waste batteries and the use of recovered materials from wastes into new batteries.
As per the Environment, Forest and Climate Change Ministry, EPR mandates all waste batteries to be collected and sent for recycling/refurbishment, and its prohibits disposal in landfills and incineration.
In order to meet the EPR obligations, producers may engage themselves or authorise any other entity for the collection, recycling or refurbishment of waste batteries, the Ministry further said.
Adding to it, the rules will enable the setting up of a mechanism and centralized online portal for the exchange of EPR certificates between producers and recyclers/refurbishers to fulfill the obligations of producers.
Besides, the rules promote the setting up of new industries and entrepreneurship in the collection and recycling/refurbishment of waste batteries.
Moreover, mandating the minimum percentage of recovery of materials from waste batteries under the rules will bring new technologies and investment in the recycling and refurbishment industry and create new business opportunities.
Notably, prescribing the use of a certain amount of recycled materials in the making of new batteries will reduce the dependency on new raw materials and save natural resources, it also mentioned.
Also, the online registration & reporting, auditing, and committee for monitoring the implementation of rules and taking measures required for removal of difficulties are salient features of rules for ensuring effective implementation and compliance, it added.
On the principle of Polluter Pays Principle, environmental compensation will be imposed for non-fulfilment of Extended Producer Responsibility targets, responsibilities and obligations set out in the rules. The funds collected under environmental compensation shall be utilised in collection and refurbishing or recycling of uncollected and non-recycled waste batteries.
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