Environmental guidance for your business in Northern Ireland & Scotland

Industrial and automotive battery producers responsibilites

Industrial and automotive battery producer responsibilities

What you must do

If you are a producer of industrial and/or automotive batteries you must register with the Department for Business, Innovation & Skills (BIS) using the National Packaging Waste Database (NPWD) within 28 days of the first day that you place batteries on the market. The NPWD is an integrated system that maintains a register of all types of battery producer - portable, industrial and automotive. You can find the NPWD on the Environment Agency website.

National Packaging Waste Database

Industrial battery take back

Producers of industrial batteries must offer and be ready to take back and collect waste industrial batteries from end users free of charge in the following instances:

  • On request, when the producer is supplying new industrial batteries to the end user during the calendar year of purchase.
  • On request, when the end user is not able to return waste industrial batteries to the original producer that supplied the batteries or outside the calendar year of purchase, eg when not purchasing new batteries from a producer. This only applies to producers that have placed industrial batteries on the market in the previous three years that are the same chemistry of waste batteries the end user is trying to dispose of. End users are expected to approach first the original supplier of the batteries which have now become waste, if they are registered as a producer.
  • If an end user is unable to dispose of waste industrial batteries by either of the options above - eg when an end user is not purchasing new batteries, and a chemistry has not been placed on the market for a number of years, so that an appropriate producer cannot be located - as a last resort the end user can contact any producer to request take back and collection free of charge.

You must publish details of how end users can contact you to arrange free take back and collection of their waste industrial batteries by 1 December of the year before you place batteries on the market. As a minimum for example, this information should be made available and easily accessible on your website.

Automotive battery take back

Producers of automotive batteries must offer to take back and collect waste automotive batteries from final holders free of charge. Final holders include garages, scrap yards, end-of-life vehicle authorised treatment facilities, civic amenity sites or anyone else that removes automotive batteries from vehicles as part of their daily business.

If you intend to place automotive batteries on the market, you must publish details of how final holders can contact you to arrange free collection of their waste automotive batteries by 1 December in the year before you place batteries on the market. As a minimum for example, this information should be made available and easily accessible on your website.

Sending waste batteries for recycling or export

All collected waste industrial and automotive batteries must be sent to an approved battery treatment operator (ABTO) for recycling, or to an approved battery exporter (ABE) that can export the waste batteries for recycling. Collection and transport may be carried out by appropriately authorised third parties.

For a list of ABTOs and ABEs, you can call:

  • the NIEA Batteries Helpline on Tel 028 9056 9382.
  • SEPA on Tel 01786 457 700.

Storing waste batteries

If you store waste industrial or automotive batteries at your site, you may need a waste management licence or registered exemption.

In Northern Ireland

You can register an exemption from waste management licensing if you store less than five tonnes of automotive or industrial batteries in any six month period. If you store more than five tonnes, you must have a waste management licence. The storage site must have a sealed drainage system and all storage must take place on an impermeable pavement, under weatherproof covering.

NIEA: Information on complex exemptions

In Scotland

You can register an exemption if you store less than five cubic metres of portable, industrial or automotive batteries in any 12 month period. If you store more than five cubic metres, you must have a waste management licence. If you store batteries, even for short periods, you must keep them on an impermeable surface with suitable weatherproof covering, or in suitable containers.

SEPA: Paragraph 17 Storage of specified wastes in a secure place

Record keeping and reporting

You must keep written records of the total amount of:

  • industrial and automotive batteries, in tonnes and by chemistry, that you have placed on the market for every year that you are registered as a producer
  • waste industrial and automotive batteries, in tonnes and by chemistry, that you have been requested to take back and collect, or arranged to have been collected, and sent for treatment and recycling.

For each year that you place industrial or automotive batteries on the UK market you must send an annual report to BIS, using the NPWD system. This must be sent by 31 March covering the preceding calendar year and include the information above.

Further information

National Packaging Waste Database

GOV.UK: Battery waste - producer and supplier responsibilities

Waste electrical and electronic equipment (WEEE) Regulations

ROHS Regulations

Hazardous/special waste

In this Guideline

Businesses affected by the batteries regulations

Identifying different battery types

Substance restrictions and battery labelling

Industrial and automotive battery producers responsibilites

Portable battery producers responsibilities

Portable batteries: distributor and retailer responsibilities

How end users can recycle batteries

Treating or recycling waste batteries

Exporting waste batteries

Battery compliance scheme operators responsibilities

Batteries: Environmental legislation

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Permits

NIEA - Apply online

SEPA - Application forms