Withdrawal of RPS211 - What Does it Mean for Me?

RPS 211 (or regulatory position statement 211) has applied to businesses who deal with excavated waste from unplanned utilities installation and repair works, but it is being withdrawn next year on 30th April 2020.


The document has allowed companies producing a small amount of waste (<10m3) from the above activities to dispose of that waste as non-hazardous by default, without having to test and classify it beforehand.


The kinds of waste types that have been covered include (but are not limited to) the following:-


  • 17 01 01 concrete
  • 17 01 02 bricks
  • 17 01 03 tiles and ceramics
  • 17 01 07 non-hazardous mixtures of concrete, bricks, tiles and ceramics
  • 17 03 02 non-hazardous bituminous mixtures
  • 17 05 04 soil and stones
  • 17 09 04 non-hazardous mixed construction and demolition wastes

After the 30th April next year companies undertaking utilities installation or repair must be able to:-

  • deliver an Environment Agency approved protocol for the classification and assessment of excavated utilities wastes
  • implement compliance with the legal requirement to correctly classify and assess this waste

Any unassessed waste from utilities excavations must be classified as hazardous. This has a cost implication on such a job - for example the tax difference alone between hazardous and non-hazardous waste can be approximately £90/tonne - therefore for 10m3 of unassessed waste soil the tax difference (not taking into account transport and tipping costs) would be around £1600.


Here at Geo-Integrity we have employees qualified in environmental and waste law and we have a large amount of experience sampling and classifying excavation wastes of all kinds.  If you would like a chat please call Murray on 07858 367 125 or email on this address



Write a comment

Comments: 4
  • #1

    Rob Mabey (Tuesday, 03 December 2019 23:45)

    Thanks for the heads-up Murray.

    Who is legally responsible for the testing? Is it the Building Network Operators or the Contractor? E.g. If UK Power Networks trenched to lay me a new elec supply, but failed to test and disposed of the spoil as un-contaminated. Who would get chased for prosecution?

  • #2

    Murray Bateman (Thursday, 05 December 2019 12:10)

    How are you mate? Hope all is good. As always would depend on where the waste was left - your property or public land? Also on the contract you had with them, but as the waste producers the finger would mostly be pointed at them. If you've got a specific problem and I can help, give me a call on 07858 367 125.

    Cheers Murray

  • #3

    John (Monday, 20 April 2020 14:16)

    They have just extended RPS211 again, this time until the end of October 2020: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/excavated-waste-from-utilities-installation-and-repair-rps-211/excavated-waste-from-utilities-installation-and-repair-rps-211

  • #4

    Graham Winter (Friday, 04 September 2020 16:52)

    If you dig a hole and discard the excavated material (waste) you are the waste producer and are responsible for correctly describing it and it's subsequent proper management. Under duty of Care the client may also be responsible if the waste ends up in the wrong place.