Mayer Parry purchases scrap metal (including packaging waste) and treats it (sorting, cleaning, cutting, crushing, separating, baling the waste), so as to render it into a form that can be used by others as ‘feedstock’ in the manufacture of steel. Steelmakers purchase the material produced by Mayer Parry and melt it down to produce ingots, sheets or coils. Mayer Parry has brought two relevant pieces of litigation before the English courts on this activity. In the first case,5 Mayer Parry sought a declaration that their operations did not require a waste management licence, arguing that the metal they purchased did not constitute waste under the Waste Framework Directive. Mayer Parry were unsuccessful, but the Environment Agency conceded in argument that once the waste scrap metal had been processed by Mayer Parry into a secondary raw material, it ceased to be waste.
Case Notes: Resources, recycling and waste