Poland Proposal Would Encourage Rerefining

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Poland Proposal Would Encourage Rerefining
An aerial view of dense smog over the city of Krakow, Poland © mychadre77

Poland’s government will introduce a waste oil management bill to encourage that used lubricants be recycled into base stocks instead of being burned as heating fuel, according to a report presented recently at a press conference in Warsaw.

The country’s ministries for development, finance and climate developed the bill, in partnership with a United Nations’ affiliate organization, the Global Compact Network Poland.

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The Polish authorities promoting the bill consider regeneration into base oils to be the best and most valuable use for waste lubricants.

The planned changes include the creation of a nationwide used oil collection system,” the report states. “It will directly contribute to increased recovery of used oils and thus eliminate the harmful practice of waste oil combustion.”

The ministries that developed the bill aim for it to be implemented in January 2021. The report presented at the press conference is titled “Economy of Used Oils – Reform and Proposal for a Bill.”

Under the bill – which would amend rules regarding the management of various types of waste – entities such as lubricant dealers, oil change stations or big industrial consumers would have to pay a tax on each liter of purchased finished lubricants and greases. They would also be required to collect used oil and ship it to the appropriate companies for recycling.

In addition, the bill would also expands the authority of the country’s energy regulatory commission, which is expected to introduce licenses for production and sale of lubricants.

“The fee can be refunded if the end users ship a certain amount of waste oil to designated enterprises for waste oil management,” Jadwiga Emilewicz, Polish deputy prime minister said at the press briefing held July 30 in the main office of the Ministry of Development, Polish business news portal Interia reported.

The tax is expected to be about 5 Polish zloty (U.S. $1.40) per liter of purchased lubricant or grease products.

The bill would “limit the illegal combustion of used oil to improve the air quality in Poland, reduce the gray zone in the lubricants industry and increase the state budget revenues,” the ministry tweeted July 30.

Poland consumed 226,448 metric tons of finished products in 2019, according to Poland’s Petroleum Industry and Trade Organization.

Despite regulations aimed at encouraging regeneration, about 40% of the waste oil generated gets burned for heating.

“The combustion is done in non-compliant heating installations that emit very toxic substances. It is a relatively cheap and available waste, often misused as a high energy fuel,” the report states.

The Ministry of Finance estimates that the value of illegal trade of waste oil in the country is up to 300 million zloty. A major part of this spending is expected to enter the legal financial channels through the payment of the tax on lubes along with value-added and corporate income taxes.