Directive 1999/31 - Landfill of waste

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Current status

This directive has been published on July 16, 1999, entered into force on the same day and should have been implemented in national regulation on July 16, 2001 at the latest.


Key information

official title

Council Directive 1999/31/EC of 26 April 1999 on the landfill of waste
Legal instrument Directive
Number legal act Directive 1999/31
Original proposal COM(1997)105 EN
CELEX number i 31999L0031


Key dates

Document 26-04-1999; Date of adoption
Publication in Official Journal 16-07-1999; Special edition in Latvian: Chapter 15 Volume 004,Special edition in Hungarian: Chapter 15 Volume 004,Special edition in Slovenian: Chapter 15 Volume 004,Special edition in Bulgarian: Chapter 15 Volume 005,OJ L 182, 16.7.1999,Special edition in Slovak: Chapter 15 Volume 004,Special edition in Polish: Chapter 15 Volume 004,Special edition in Maltese: Chapter 15 Volume 004,Special edition in Czech: Chapter 15 Volume 004,Special edition in Estonian: Chapter 15 Volume 004,Special edition in Romanian: Chapter 15 Volume 005,Special edition in Lithuanian: Chapter 15 Volume 004
Effect 16-07-1999; Entry into force Date pub. See Art 19
End of validity 31-12-9999
Transposition 16-07-2001; At the latest See Art 18


Legislative text

Avis juridique important




Council Directive 1999/31/EC of 26 April 1999 on the landfill of waste

Official Journal L 182 , 16/07/1999 P. 0001 - 0019


of 26 April 1999

on the landfill of waste


Having regard to the Treaty establishing the European Community, and in particular Article 130s(1) thereof,

Having regard to the proposal from the Commission(1),

Having regard to the opinion of the Economic and Social Committee(2),

Acting in accordance with the procedure laid down in Article 189c of the Treaty(3),

  • (1) 
    Whereas the Council resolution of 7 May 1990(4) on waste policy welcomes and supports the Community strategy document and invites the Commission to propose criteria and standards for the disposal of waste by landfill;
  • (2) 
    Whereas the Council resolution of 9 December 1996 on waste policy considers that, in the future, only safe and controlled landfill activities should be carried out throughout the Community;
  • (3) 
    Whereas the prevention, recycling and recovery of waste should be encouraged as should the use of recovered materials and energy so as to safeguard natural resources and obviate wasteful use of land;
  • (4) 
    Whereas further consideration should be given to the issues of incineration of municipal and non-hazardous waste, composting, biomethanisation, and the processing of dredging sludges;
  • (5) 
    Whereas under the polluter pays principle it is necessary, inter alia, to take into account any damage to the environment produced by a landfill;
  • (6) 
    Whereas, like any other type of waste treatment, landfill should be adequately monitored and managed to prevent or reduce potential adverse effects on the environment and risks to human health;
  • (7) 
    Whereas it is necessary to take appropriate measures to avoid the abandonment, dumping or uncontrolled disposal of waste; whereas, accordingly, it must be possible to monitor landfill sites with respect to the substances contained in the waste deposited there, whereas such substances should, as far as possible, react only in foreseeable ways;
  • (8) 
    Whereas both the quantity and hazardous nature of waste intended for landfill should be reduced where appropriate; whereas the handling of waste should be facilitated and its recovery enhanced; whereas the use of treatment processes should therefore be encouraged to ensure that landfill is compatible with the objectives of this Directive; whereas sorting is included in the definition of treatment;
  • (9) 
    Whereas Member States should be able to apply the principles of proximity and self-sufficiency for the elimination of their waste at Community and national level, in accordance with Council Directive 75/442/EEC of 15 July 1975 on waste(5) whereas the objectives of this Directive must be pursued and clarified through the establishment of an adequate, integrated network of disposal plants based on a high level of environmental protection;
  • (10) 
    Whereas disparities between technical standards for the disposal of waste by landfill and the lower costs associated with it might give rise to increased disposal of waste in facilities with low standards of environmental protection and thus create a potentially serious threat to the environment, owing to transport of waste over unnecessarily long distances as well as to inappropriate disposal practices;
  • (11) 
    Whereas it is therefore necessary to lay down technical standards for the landfill of waste at Community level in order to protect, preserve and improve the quality of the environment in the Community;
  • (12) 
    Whereas it is necessary to indicate clearly the requirements with which landfill sites must comply as regards location, conditioning, management, control, closure and preventive and protective measures to be taken against any threat...


This text has been adopted from EUR-Lex.


Original proposal



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