The Ministry of Environment, Forestry, and Climate Change implemented the Battery Waste Management Rules in 2022 under the Environment (Protection) Act, 1986, replacing the Battery (Management and Handling) Rules, 2001.
The waste battery includes the used or end-of-life battery or its components, which are or are not hazardous in nature, and the pre-consumer off-spec battery or its components, expired batteries, and user-discarded batteries.
The act contains a detailed description of how to manage various types of waste batteries. The types are as follows:
- Used or End-of-life Battery and its hazardous/non-hazardous components
- Batteries diverted during the manufacturing process
- Discarded Batteries
It includes every category of batteries, such as:
- Electric vehicle batteries
- Portable batteries
- Automotive batteries
- Industrial batteries
The functionality of EPR for Battery Waste Management
- The EPR for battery waste management defines the functionalities of the Extended Producer Responsibility (EPR), wherein the producers, including importers of batteries, are held responsible for recycling, refurbishing, and collecting waste batteries and using the same as new batteries.
- The EPR mandatory provisions say that all the waste batteries must be collected and sent for recycling, and they prohibit the disposal of the batteries in landfills or incineration.
- To facilitate EPR, producers are free to delegate their activities to other entities for waste battery collection, recycling, or refurbishment.
- The EPR certificate is exchanged between producers, recyclers, and refurbishers via the online portal in accordance with the regulations so that they can carry out the producers' obligations. The regulations, which mandate a minimum percentage of material recovery from waste batteries, will lead to new investments and technological advancements in the recycling and refurbishing sectors as well as the emergence of new business opportunities for them.
- As per the mandate of the Battery Waste Management (BWM) Rules 2022, the promotion shall be for setting up new industries and entrepreneurs in the collection, recycling, and refurbishment of waste batteries.
- Measures can be taken to remove difficulties and make features ensuring effective implementation and compliance with the rules and regulations through the online portal, online registration, auditing, reporting, and the formation of a committee for the monitoring of the implementation of the rules and regulations.
- Following the application of the Polluter Pay Principle, environmental compensation will be imposed for failure to meet the EPR targets and the rules' requirements.
Application of the Battery Waste Management Rules, 2022
The following entities are involved in collecting, recycling, sorting, transporting, and refurbishing battery waste and are subject to the Battery Waste Management Rule, 2022: