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Waste Wood Classification – How To Categorise Your Waste Wood

Whether you work at a skip yard, a demolition site or a waste transfer station, if you work with demolition waste wood, it is your legal duty to identify potentially hazardous waste wood and action it accordingly under the Waste Wood Classification guidance.

What is Waste Wood Classification?

Waste Wood Classification is the process of ensuring that waste wood is properly classified at its origin and is processed into appropriate end markets based on the Regulatory Positioning Statement (RPS) 250. By classifying waste wood, we can identify which items are hazardous in accordance with WM3 guidance and ensure they are dealt with appropriately.

What is RPS250?

RPS250 applies to hazardous waste wood removed from domestic premises, demolition sites and other business premises and undertakings. The RPS came into effect on the 1st of August 2021 and allows operators with an existing environmental permit to store hazardous waste wood at a waste transfer station and process and mix hazardous waste wood with non-hazardous waste wood at a wood processing site.

This RPS gives organisations time to understand the quantities and types of hazardous waste wood arising from demolition and refurbishment activities and to apply for a permit variation to accept hazardous waste wood if there is a market and business need.

What Are ‘Potentially Hazardous’ Items?

Potentially hazardous items include fence posts, decking and certain types of waste wood from pre-2007 buildings including roof timbers, external joinery and tiling battens. It does not apply to materials such as railway sleepers and telegraph poles, which are already known to be hazardous and require specialist hazardous waste treatment.

How can I Classify My Waste Wood?

As per RPS250, you should first IDENTIFY the type of wood using the RPS250 quick guide. Once this is done, a sample of the whole piece of the item should be taken (a cross-section from the middle no smaller than 150mm long) which can be sent to an accurate and reliable laboratory for TESTING. Only after this should you determine whether you should ASSIGN or CONSIGN your materials.

What If My Waste Wood Is Hazardous?

If your waste wood is deemed Hazardous, it must be consigned using a Hazardous consignment note. This needs to be completed fully, detailing the weight of the specific items. These items should be segregated and only when segregation is not practical can they be blended within a non-hazardous wood load.

Following this process, these materials can then be sent to an RPS250-compliant reprocessor, where they can be blended into material which can then be used for IED Chapter IV compliant biomass energy plants or the manufacture of panel boards.

How can Alfred H Knight Help?

We have a wealth of experience in the analysis of waste wood, providing dedicated fuels and process residue testing services to major clients within the processing and recycling sectors.

Our highly-skilled experts carry out analysis entirely in-house from our ISO17025 accredited laboratories, strategically located throughout the UK. This ensures that our clients get a swift, accurate and reliable service.

Our service is tailored to our client’s needs and requirements and our contact service centre mean you can access field personnel whenever needed.

If you would like to get in touch with an AHK expert to discuss best practice Waste Wood Classification and how we can provide support and analysis, head to our contact page.