Basel Waste Codes

Basel Waste Codes

Key to Sustainable Management of Environmental Resources

Basel Convention - Introduction

The Basel Waste Codes are a system of waste classification and management that was introduced by the Basel Convention for a coordinated approach to waste management on a global scale. These codes provide the foundation for effective waste management while supporting the goals of sustainable development and environmental protection.

History and purpose of the Basel Waste Codes:

Basel Waste Codes were adopted in 1992 by the Basel Convention in Switzerland. Their purpose is to control the transboundary movement of hazardous wastes to avoid negative impacts on human health and the environment. The codes also help to identify and classify different types of waste to facilitate effective national and international management. The list of hazard characteristics is described in Annex III at the end of this article.

Structure of the Basel Waste Codes:

The Basel Waste Codes consist of alphanumeric designations that accurately identify the type and source of waste. It consists of 20 categories described in Annex VIII (environmentally hazardous waste) and Annex IX (non-hazardous waste). Each category includes specific groups of waste. These codes make it possible to determine precisely whether a waste is hazardous or non-hazardous and also help to predict the possible effects on the environment.

At this point, it should be mentioned that the waste listed in Annex VIII is hazardous waste for the environment and its international transport is restricted by separate regulations. When transporting this waste across national borders, including the EU, appropriate notifications must be in place.

A list of Basel codes can be found at the end of the article.

The role of Basel Waste Codes in Waste Management:

Basel Waste Codes play a key role in waste management, enabling effective monitoring, transport and treatment of waste at various stages. In the case of hazardous waste, a specific approach to its transport and disposal is required and these codes help to ensure compliance with international regulations.

Relevance to Industry:

Industry also plays an important role in the effective application of the Basel Waste Codes. A company producing waste must accurately classify it according to the relevant codes, which facilitates proper waste management within company procedures and contributes to environmental protection.

Challenges and Perspectives:

While there are numerous benefits of the Basel Waste Codes, there are also challenges associated with their use, such as the need for constant updating due to evolving technologies and chemicals. Nevertheless, future prospects point to the need for global engagement to effectively manage waste and protect the environment.

Summary:

The Basel Waste Codes are an important instrument in the global effort to sustainably manage environmental resources. By classifying waste precisely, they facilitate effective waste management at all levels, from local to international. Their role in the protection of human health and the environment is invaluable, making them a key component of the green and sustainable development effort.

Basel code list

Annex VIII - hazardous waste

A1Metal and metal bearing wastes

A1010 Metal wastes and wastes consisting of an alloy of any of the following:

  • Antimony
  • Arsenic
  • Beryl
  • Cadmium
  • Lead
  • Mercury
  • Selenium
  • Tellur
  • Tal

but excluding such waste specifically listed on List B.

A1020 Waste containing as constituents or contaminants, excluding metal waste in massive form, any of the following:

  • Antimony; antimony compounds
  • Beryllium; beryllium compounds
  • Cadmium; cadmium compounds
  • Lead; lead compounds
  • Selenium; selenium compounds
  • Tellurium; tellurium compounds

A1030 Waste containing, as constituents or impurities, any of the following:

  • Arsenic; arsenic compounds
  • Mercury; mercury compounds.
  • Thallium; thallium compounds

A1040 Waste containing as constituents any of the following:

  • Metal carbonyls
  • Hexavalent chromium compounds

A1050 Galvanic sludges

A1060 Waste clarified liquid from metal etching

A1070 Leaching residues from zinc processing, dust and sludge such as jarosite, hematite, etc.

A1080 Zinc waste residues not included on list B, containing lead and cadmium in concentrations sufficient to exhibit Annex III characteristics

A1090 Ashes from the combustion of insulated copper wires

A1100 Dusts and residues from gas cleaning systems of copper smelting furnaces

A1110 Spent electrolytic solutions from electrolytic copper refining and electrolytic copper production

A1120 Sludge waste, excluding anode but excluding anode but excluding anode sludges from electrolytic refining of copper and electrolytic copper production

A1130 Spent etching solutions containing dissolved copper

A1140 Waste copper chloride and copper cyanide catalysts

A1150 Precious metal ash from the combustion of printed circuit boards, not included on list B 6

A1160 Waste acid batteries, whole or crushed

A1170 Unsorted waste batteries, excluding mixtures of only list B batteries. waste batteries not specified on list B containing Annex I constituents to an extent to render them hazardous

A1180 Waste or scrap electrical and electronic assemblies 7 containing components such as accumulators and other batteries on List A, mercury switches, glass from cathode-ray tubes and other activated glass and PCB capacitors or contaminated by Annex I compounds (e.g. cadmium, mercury, lead, polychlorinated biphenyl) to an extent that they possess Annex III characteristics (see the related entry on List B, B1110) 8

A1190 Waste cables covered or insulated with plastics containing or contaminated with coal tar, polychlorinated biphenyls 9 , lead, cadmium, other organohalogen compounds or other Annex I constituents, to the extent that they exhibit Annex III characteristics;

A2 Wastes containing principally inorganic compounds which may contain metals and organic matter

A2010 Glass waste from cathode-ray tubes and other activated glasses

A2020 Waste inorganic fluorine compounds in the form of liquids or slurries but excluding such wastes specified on list B

A2030 Waste catalysts excluding those mentioned on list B

A2040 Waste gypsum arising from industrial chemical processes, when containing Annex I constituents to the extent that it exhibits Annex III hazardous waste characteristics (see the relevant entry on List B, B2080)

A2050 Asbestos waste (dust and fibres)

A2060 Coal-fired power plant fly ash containing Annex I substances in concentrations sufficient to exhibit Annex III characteristics (see the relevant B-list category, B2050)

A3 Wastes containing principally organic compounds which may contain metals and inorganic substances

A3010 Wastes from the production or processing of petroleum coke and bitumen

A3020 Mineral oil wastes unfit for their originally intended use

A3030 Wastes that contain, consist of or are contaminated with leaded anti-knock compound deposits

A3040 Waste thermal fluids (heat exchangers)

A3050 Wastes from production, formulation and use of resins, latex, plasticizers, glues/adhesives excluding such wastes specified on List B (note the related entry on List B, B4020)

A3060 Nitrocellulose waste

A3070 Waste phenols, phenol compounds including chlorophenol from liquids or suspensions

A3080 Waste ethers not including those specified on list B

A3090 Waste dust, ash, sludges and leather flour when containing hexavalent chromium compounds or biocides (note the related entry on list B, B3100)

A3100 Waste paring and other waste of leather or of composition leather not suitable for the manufacture of leather articles containing hexavalent chromium compounds or biocides (note the related entry on List B, B3090)

A3110 Wastes from dressing of leather, containing hexavalent chromium compounds or biocides or infectious substances (note the related entry on list B, B3110)

A3120 Soft shredder waste fraction

A3130 Waste organic compounds containing phosphorus

A3140 Waste non-halogenated organic solvents but excluding such wastes specified on list B

A3150 Waste halogenated organic solvents

A3160 Waste halogenated or unhalogenated dry distillation residues arising from organic solvent recovery operations

A3170 Wastes from the production of aliphatic organochlorine hydrocarbons (such as chloromethane, dichloroethane, vinyl chloride, vinylidene chloride, allyl chloride and epichlorohydrin)

A3180 Wastes, substances and articles containing, consisting of or contaminated with polychlorinated biphenyl (PCB) or polychlorinated terphenyl (PCT), polychlorinated naphthalene (PCN) or polybrominated biphenyl (PBB) or any other polybrominated derivatives of these compounds, at a concentration level of 50 mg/kg or more 10

A3190 Waste tarry residues (excluding asphalt cements) arising from refining, distillation and other pyrolitic treatment of organic substances

A3200 Bituminous materials (asphalt waste) from road construction and maintenance, containing tar (subject to the relevant entry on List B, B2130)

A4 Waste which may contain either inorganic or organic constituents

A4010 Wastes from the production, formulation and use of pharmaceutical products but excluding such wastes specified on List B

A4020 Clinical and related wastes; wastes from medical, nursing, dental, veterinary and similar practices and wastes generated in hospitals and other facilities in the course of research, treatment of patients or research projects

A4030 Wastes from the production, formulation and use of biocides and phytopharmaceuticals, including waste pesticides and herbicides, off-specification, out-of-date or unfit for their originally intended use

A4040 Wastes from the manufacture, formulation and use of wood preservative chemicals 12

A4050 Waste that contains, consists of or is contaminated with any of the following substances:

  • Inorganic cyanides, except for residues containing precious metals in solid form with traces of inorganic cyanides
  • Organic cyanides

A4060 Oil/water waste, hydrocarbon/water mixtures, emulsions

A4070 Wastes from production, formulation and use of inks, dyes, pigments, paints, lacquers, varnish excluding such wastes specified on List B (note the related entry on List B, B4010)

A4080 Wastes of an explosive nature (excluding those wastes listed on List B)

A4090 Waste acidic or basic solutions, other than those specified in the corresponding entry on list B (note the related entry on list B, B2120)

A4100 Wastes from industrial pollution control devices for cleaning of industrial off-gases but excluding such wastes specified on List B

A4110 Waste that contains, consists of or is contaminated with any of the following substances:

  • Compound belonging to the group of polychlorinated dibenzofuran
  • Compound belonging to the group polychlorinated dibenzodioxin

A4120 Wastes that contain, consist of or are contaminated with peroxides

A4130 Packaging and waste containers containing Annex I substances in concentrations sufficient to exhibit Annex III hazardous waste characteristics

A4140 Wastes consisting of or containing off-specification or out-dated 13 chemicals corresponding to Annex I categories and exhibiting Annex III hazard characteristics

A4150 Waste chemical substances arising from research and development or teaching activities which are not identified or new and whose effects on human health or the environment are unknown

A4160 Spent activated carbon not included on list B (see the related entry on list B, B2060)

 

ANNEX IX Non-hazardous waste

B1 Metal and metal bearing wastes

B1010 Metal and metal alloy waste in non-dispersible metallic form:

  • Precious metals (gold, silver, platinum group except mercury)
  • Iron and steel scrap
  • Copper scrap
  • Nickel scrap
  • Aluminium scrap
  • Zinc scrap
  • Tin scrap
  • Tungsten scrap
  • Molybdenum scrap
  • Tantalum scrap
  • Magnesium scrap
  • Cobalt scrap
  • Bismuth scrap
  • Titanium scrap
  • Zirconium scrap
  • Manganese scrap
  • Germanium scrap
  • Vanadium scrap
  • Scrap of hafnium, indium, niobium, rhenium and gallium
  • Track scrap
  • Rare earth elements scrap
  • Chromium scrap

B1020 Clean, uncontaminated metal scrap, including metal alloys, in final bulk form (sheets, plates, beams, bars, etc.):

  • Antimony scrap
  • Beryllium scrap
  • Cadmium scrap
  • Lead scrap (but excluding lead-acid batteries)
  • Selenium scrap
  • Tellurium scrap

B1030 Refractory metals containing residues

B1031 Molybdenum, tungsten, titanium, tantalum, niobium and rhenium metal and metal alloy wastes in metallic dispersible form (metal powder), excluding such wastes as specified on List A, entry A1050, Galvanic sludges

B1040 Scrap assemblies from power generation not contaminated with lubricating oil, PCBs or PCTs to the extent that they are hazardous waste

B1050 Mixed non-ferrous metals, heavy fraction scrap, not containing Annex 1 materials, in concentrations sufficient to exhibit Annex III characteristics 15

B1060 Selenium and tellurium waste in metallic free form including powder

B1070 Copper and copper alloy wastes in dispersible form, unless they contain Annex I constituents to the extent that they exhibit Annex III characteristics

B1080 Zinc ash and residues including zinc alloy residues in dispersible form unless they contain Annex I constituents to the extent that they exhibit Annex III characteristics or exhibit hazard properties H4.3 16

B1090 Battery waste complying with specifications, excluding batteries containing lead, cadmium or mercury

B1100 Metal-bearing waste arising from the melting, smelting and refining of metals:

  • Hard zinc alloy
  • Zinc-containing enrichment waste:

- Slab zinc top dross (>90% zn)

- Galvanised slab zinc bottom dross (>92% zn)

- Zinc die-casting dross (>85% zn)

- Hot dip galvanised slab zinc dross (> 92% zn)

- Zinc scum

  • Aluminium scum (or foam) excluding salt scum
  • Slags from copper processing for further processing or refining not containing arsenic, lead or cadmium to an extent that they exhibit Annex III hazard characteristics
  • Wastes of refractory linings and refractories, including crucibles used in copper smelting
  • Slags from precious metal smelting for further refining
  • Tantalum bearing tin slags with less than 0.5%

B1110 Electrical and electronic assemblies:

  • Electronic assemblies consisting exclusively of metals or alloys
  • Waste or scrap of electrical and electronic assemblies 17 (including printed circuit boards) not containing components such as accumulators or other List A batteries, mercury switches, glass from cathode-ray tubes and other activated glass and PCB capacitors, or not contaminated by Annex I compounds (e.g. cadmium, mercury, lead, polychlorinated biphenyl) or from which they have been removed to such an extent that they do not possess Annex III properties (see the relevant A-list category, A1180)
  • Electrical and electronic assemblies (including printed circuit boards, electronic components and wires) destined for direct re-use 18 and not for reprocessing or final disposal 19

B1115 Waste metal cables coated or insulated with plastics, not included in List A of Category A1190, excluding those destined for disposal operations involving, at any stage, uncontrolled thermal processes, such as open-burning;

B1120 Spent catalysts, excluding liquids used as catalysts, containing any substance:

 

Table

 

B1130 Cleaned spent precious-metal-bearing catalysts

B1140 Precious-metal-bearing residues in solid form containing traces of inorganic cyanides

B1150 Precious metals and alloy wastes (gold, silver, the platinum group, but not mercury) in a dispersible, non-liquid form, appropriately packaged and labelled

B1160 Precious metal ash from the combustion of printed circuit boards (see the relevant category in List A, A1150)

B1170 Precious metal ash from the combustion of photographic films

B1180 Waste photographic film containing silver halides and silver metal

B1190 Waste photographic paper containing silver halides and silver metal

B1200 Granulated slag from iron and steel production

B1210 Slag from iron and steel production, including slag as a source of TiO2 and vanadium

B1220 Slag from zinc production, chemically stabilised, with high iron content (above 20%), processed according to industrial standards (e.g. DIN 4301), mainly for construction purposes

B1230 Rolling mill scale from iron and steel production

B1240 Copper oxide scale

B1250 End-of-life motor vehicle waste containing neither liquids nor other hazardous compounds

B2 Wastes containing principally inorganic compounds which may contain metals and organic matter

B2010 Non-dispersible mining waste:

  • Natural graphite waste
  • Slate waste, whether roughly trimmed or cut with a saw or otherwise
  • Mica waste
  • Waste leucite, nepheline and nepheline syenite
  • Feldspar waste
  • Fluorspar waste
  • Silica wastes in solid form excluding those used in foundry operations

B2020 Glass waste in non-dispersible form:

  • Cullet and other glass waste and scrap except for glass from cathode-ray tubes and other activated glasses

B2030 Ceramic waste in non-dispersible form:

  • Ceramic-metal sinters wastes and residues
  • Ceramic based fibres not elsewhere specified or included

B2040 Other wastes containing mainly inorganic compounds:

  • Partially refined calcium sulphate produced from flue-gas desulphurisation (FGD)
  • Gypsum wallboard and plasterboard waste arising from the demolition of buildings
  • Slag from copper production, chemically stabilised, with a high iron content (above 20%), processed according to industrial specifications (e.g. DIN 4301 and DIN 8201), mainly for construction purposes and as an abrasive
  • Sulphur in solid form
  • Limestone from the production of calcium cyanamide (having a ph below 9)
  • Sodium, potassium and calcium chlorides
  • Carborundum (silicon carbide)
  • Concrete aggregate
  • Lithium-tantalum and lithium-niobium containing glass scrap

B2050 Coal-fired power plant fly ash, not included on list A (see the relevant category on list A, A2060)

B2060 Spent activated carbon not containing any of the Annex I compounds to the extent that it exhibits Annex III waste characteristics, for example carbon from the treatment of potable water and from food and vitamin production (see the related entry on List A, A4160)

B2070 Calcium fluoride suspension

B2080 Waste gypsum arising from industrial chemical processes, not included on list A (note the related entry on list A, A2040)

B2090 Waste anode remnants from steel or aluminium production made from petroleum coke or bitumen and refined to normal industrial requirements (excluding anode remnants from the chlor-alkali electrolysis industry and from the metallurgical industry)

B2100 Aluminium hydrate waste and waste alumina and residues from alumina production excluding such substances used for gas cleaning, flocculation and filtration processes

B2110Bauxite residue ("red mud") (pH maintained below 11.5)

B2120 Waste acidic or basic solutions with a pH greater than 2 and less than 11.5 which are not corrosive or otherwise hazardous (see the relevant entry on List A, A4090)

B2130 Bituminous materials (asphalt waste) from road construction and maintenance, not containing tar 20 (respecting the related entry on List A, A3200)

B3 Wastes containing principally organic compounds which may contain metals and inorganic materials

B3010 Solid plastic waste:

The following plastics or mixtures of plastics, provided they are not mixed with other wastes and are prepared to specification:

  • Plastic residues of non-halogenated polymers and copolymers, including but not limited to the following 21 :

- ethylene

- styrene

- polypropylene

- polyethylene terephthalate

- acrylonitrile

- butadiene

- polyacetals

- polyamides

- polybutylene terephthalate

- polycarbonates

- polyethers

- polyphenylene sulphides

- acrylic polymers

- C10-C13 alkanes (plasticiser)

- polyurethanes (CFC-free)

- polysiloxanes

- polymethyl methacrylate

- polyvinyl alcohol

- polyvinyl butyral

- polyvinyl acetate

  • Waste cured resin or condensed products:

- urea-formaldehyde resins

- phenol-formaldehyde resins

- melamine-formaldehyde resins

- epoxy resins

- alkyd resins

- polyamides

  • Fluorinated polymer wastes 22

- perfluoroethylene/propylene (FEP)

  • Perfluoro alkoxyl alkane

> Tetrafluoroethylene/perfluoro vinyl ether (PFA)

> Tetrafluoroethylene/perfluoromethyl vinyl ether (MFA)

- polyvinyl fluoride (PVF)

- polyvinylidene fluoride (PVDF)

B3020 Paper, paperboard and paper product wastes

The following materials, provided they are not mixed with hazardous waste:

Waste and waste paper or cardboard:

  • unbleached paper or cardboard, corrugated paper or cardboard
  • other paper or paperboard, made mainly of bleached chemical pulp, not coloured in the mass
  • paper or cardboard, made mainly of wood pulp (e.g. newspapers, magazines and similar printed matter)
  • other, including but not limited to

1. laminated cardboard

2) unsorted waste paper

B3026 The following wastes from the pre-processing of packaging of composite liquids, not containing materials listed in Annex I in concentrations sufficient to exhibit Annex III characteristics:

- non-separable plastic fraction

- non-separable plastic and aluminium fraction

B3027 Self-adhesive labelstock waste containing raw materials used in labelstock production

B3030 Textile waste

The following materials, provided they are not mixed with other waste and are prepared to specification:

  • silk waste (including cocoons unsuitable for reeling, yarn waste and garnetted rags):

- not carded or combed

- others

  • Waste of wool or of fine or coarse animal hair, including yarn waste but excluding garnetted stock

- noils of wool or of fine animal hair

- other waste of wool or of fine animal hair

- waste from coarse animal hair

  • Cotton waste (including yarn waste and garnetted stock)

- yarn waste (including thread waste)

- tattered rags

- others

  • Linen waste and tow
  • Waste and tow (including yarn waste and garnetted stock) of true hemp (Cannabis sativa L.)
  • Waste and tow (including yarn waste and garnetted stock) of jute and other textile bast fibres (excluding flax, true hemp and ramie)
  • Waste and packing (including yarn waste and garnetted stock) of sisal and other textile fibres of the agave family
  • Tow, noils and waste (including yarn waste and garnetted stock) of coconut
  • Tow, noils and waste (including yarn waste and garnetted stock) of abaca (Manila hemp or Musa textilis Nee)
  • Tow, noils and waste (including yarn waste and garnetted stock) of ramie and other vegetable textile fibres, not elsewhere specified or included
  • Waste (including noils, yarn waste and garnetted stock) of man-made fibres

- synthetic fibres

- man-made fibres

  • Worn clothing and other worn textile products
  • Used rags, scrap twine, rope and cordage, used twine, rope and cordage products of textiles

- segregated

- others

B3035 Waste from textile floor coverings, carpets

B3040 Rubber waste

The following materials, provided they are not mixed with other waste:

  • Waste and scrap of hard rubber (e.g. Ebonite)
  • Other rubber wastes (excluding such wastes specified elsewhere)

B3050 Untreated cork and wood waste:

  • Wood waste and scrap, whether in bulk or in logs, briquettes, pellets or similar forms
  • Cork waste: crushed, granulated or ground cork

B3060 Waste from the agri-food industry, provided it is not contaminated:

  • Wine lees
  • Dried and sterilised vegetable waste, residues and by-products, whether in the form of pellets or otherwise, of a kind used in animal feeding, not elsewhere specified or included
  • Degras; residues resulting from the treatment of fatty substances or animal or vegetable waxes
  • Waste of bones and horn-cores, unworked, defatted, simply prepared (but not cut to shape), treated with acid or degelatinised
  • Fish waste
  • Cocoa shells, husks, skins and other cocoa waste
  • Other wastes from the agro-food industry, excluding by-products that meet national and international requirements and standards for human or animal consumption

B3065 Waste edible fats and oils of animal or vegetable origin (e.g. frying oils), provided they do not exhibit Annex III characteristics

B3070 The following waste:

* Waste of human hair

* Straw waste

* Deactivated fungal mycelium from penicillin production, used as animal feed.

B3080 Waste, trimmings and rubber residues

B3090 Parings and other waste of leather or of composition leather not suitable for the manufacture of leather articles, excluding leather tanning waste, not containing hexavalent chromium compounds or biocides (note the related entry on list A, A3100)

B3100 Leather dust, ash, sludges and flours not containing hexavalent chromium compounds or biocides (see the related entry on list A, A3090)

B3110 Leather tanning wastes not containing hexavalent chromium compounds or biocides or infectious substances (note the related entry on list A, A3110)

B3120 Wastes which include food colours

B3130 Polymeric ether waste and non-hazardous waste monomeric ethers incapable of forming peroxides

B3140 Waste pneumatic tyres, excluding those destined for Annex IVA operations

B4 Waste which may contain either inorganic or organic constituents

B4010 Wastes consisting mainly of emulsion or latex paints, inks and cured varnishes not containing organic solvents, heavy metals or biocides to an extent to render them hazardous (note the related entry on list A, A4070)

B4020 Wastes from production, formulation and use of resins, latex, plasticisers, glues/adhesives, not listed on list A, free of solvents and other impurities to an extent that they do not exhibit Annex III characteristics, e.g. water based, or glues based on casein starch, dextrin, cellulose ethers, polyvinyl alcohols (note the related entry on list A, A3050)

B4030 Used single-use cameras with batteries, not included on List A

 

ANNEX III List of hazard characteristics

UN class table