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This page is updated regularly.

If you have any questions about the evaluation of PRTR data, please use the Contact page to make an e-mail enquiry.

Clean and 'dirty' waste incineration plants

Please use the search form to find out how much of a certain pollutant a waste incineration plant is releasing to the environment. In the search category "Sector/Activity" select Activity 5b) "Non-hazardous waste incineration installations". You will see a list of all the incineration plants in Germany that are in the German PRTR. Clicking on the zoom icon will open the individual facility's fact sheet which also contains data on its emissions.

To refine your search, for example to find out about a waste incineration plant in a specific town or city or to look up specific pollutant emissions data of waste incineration plants, you can use the "Location" or "Pollutant" search criteria.

The cleanest and dirtiest facilities in, Germany's national PRTR

It is often impossible to judge which facility is the greatest or smallest polluter on the basis of emissions data alone. The following must also be taken into consideration:

  • A facility may use a number of different substances for production and thereby incur various types of waste. It is nevertheless feasible that it has very low pollutant emissions and low volumes of waste which it must dispose of,
  • whereas another facility may release only one type of pollutant but in very large volumes. 
  • Not all pollutants are equal. Some may have a great impact in the smallest of amounts whilst others are only harmful to the environment or climate in large amounts.
  • Large volumes of pollutant releases do not necessarily mean that the facility does 'dirty' work. Example: a large facility may have higher net emissions owing to its production volume despite state-of-the-art technology than a small facility whose environmental and production technology is not cutting-edge.

Disposal of waste in Germany and abroad

Reporting waste shipments represents a considerable expansion of the scope of PRTR compared to the previous EPER (European Pollutant Emission Register). The PRTR distinguishes between hazardous and non-hazardous waste (threshold values: 2 t/a for hazardous waste; 2,000 t/a for non-hazardous waste). It takes account of the waste streams that are disposed of beyond the confines of a facility. The reporting process for waste is complex and wide-ranging. Why?

Operators must report to PRTR whether hazardous waste was disposed of in Germany or abroad. This information is not required for non-hazardous waste.
On the other hand they must indicate for both types of waste (hazardous and non-hazardous) whether it was disposed of or recovered.
Operators who ship hazardous waste abroad must also provide the following information about the destination of the waste:

  • Country, name and address of the recoverer/disposer,
  • Country, name and address of actual recovery/disposal site

In some cases, facilities may keep certain information about waste confidential; this is the case with the transfer of hazardous waste abroad in particular. "Operational and Business Secrets" are the most common grounds for confidentiality (see also Q & A).

Another differentiating factor in reporting waste disposal is that the total volume of waste disposed in relation to the threshold value is always decisive.
Example: a facility which transfers 1.25 t of hazardous waste to another country and disposes of 1.5 t domestically must – because of its net amount of 2.75 t of hazardous waste – report this exceedance to the PRTR.