You are here: Home / News / Defra Respond to Aluminium PRN Shortfall

Defra Respond to Aluminium PRN Shortfall

The latest Environment Agency figures continue to show the number of aluminium packaging waste recovery notes (PRNs) issued in the UK are not on track to meet the 2015 statutory business targets for recycling of aluminium packaging. This follows on from the trading update from Commercial Manager Chris Taylor in our July clearview where he noted that aluminium was looking “at best, 40% to its annual target, resulting in a requirement of over 20,000T per quarter for quarters three and four”. The target for aluminium recycling is 69,927T, and in the first half of 2015 only 27,290 tonnes were recycled.

Following their analysis of Q1 and Q2 packaging data, Consultancy 360 Environmental believe the shortfall is a result of changes to inclusion of incinerator bottom ash and low PRN prices in 2014. This has caused a 20% reduction in the number of accredited reprocessors/exporters and therefore a drop in reported tonnage.

In response to the figures, Defra has issued a position statement saying:

“We expect producers and compliance schemes to comply with their packaging recycling and recovery obligations. If there are instances of non-compliance identified at the end of the year, the Environment Agency, Scottish Environment Protection Agency, Natural Resources Wales and the Northern Ireland Environment Agency will take appropriate enforcement action.”

They add they are mindful of the situation and have announced three ways reprocessors can help address it:
“We urge unaccredited reprocessors and exporters to become accredited and we encourage compliance schemes to actively assist them in this process to help secure the requisite number of PRNs/PERNs for their producer members.
We want reprocessors and exporters to make every effort to recycle all available aluminium packaging waste.
We urge reprocessors and exporters to make PRNs/PERNs available to the market.”

For operators accredited to issue PRNs/PERNs after 1 January 2015, Defra are applying an exception where the relevant agency will regard the operators as being accredited to issue PRNs/PERNs in relation to the total amount of waste received over an ‘extended period’ – that is from the date the application was received by the relevant agency, rather than the date on which it was approved.

 Chris Taylor, Commercial Manager at Clarity says:

“These are indeed worrying times. We have seen in the past years that aluminium PRNs have exceeded £100 per tonne in trying times and I would expect prices to continue rising in the near future. I would hope that the news regarding newly accredited reprocessors and exporters ability to claim from the date of application will encourage those who no longer find the PRN system beneficial to re-enter the market.”

While the aluminium trading market remains challenging, our trading team at Clarity continue to offer flexible options for PRNS and PERNs. Call us now to find out how we can help your business comply on 0845 129 7177.  You can also meet Chris and other members of our team to talk aluminium and other issues at RWM 2015, held from the 15th – 17th September, on stand 4N39.

Related News & Views