The EWC European Waste Code is an identification code that is assigned to each type of waste based on its composition and the process from which it originates. As for hazardous waste, the characterization lies in the origin of the waste and in the content of hazardous substances.
The new EWC (decision 2014/955 / EU) has been in force since 1 June 2015 and assigns each type of waste a six-digit numeric string, made up as follows:

  • the first two numbers (chapter) are representative of the kind to which the type of waste is attributed
  • the following figures (below chapters) are further specifications of the type of waste.

The precise identification of the waste is essential for the subsequent recovery and / or disposal phases.
The EWC is to be reported on the SISTRI card or on the waste identification form and on the chronological register or register of loading and unloading of waste.

The chapters of the EWC

  • 01 Wastes from prospecting, mining or quarrying, as well as from physical or chemical treatment of minerals
  • 02 Wastes from agriculture, horticulture, aquaculture, forestry, hunting and fishing, food processing and preparation
  • 03 Wastes from wood processing and the production of panels, furniture, pulp, paper and cardboard
  • 04 Wastes from the leather and fur industry and the textile industry
  • 05 Wastes from oil refining, purification of natural gas and pyrolytic treatment of coal
  • 06 Wastes from inorganic chemical processes
  • 07 Wastes from organic chemical processes
  • 08 Wastes from the production, formulation, supply and use (PFFU) of coatings (paints, varnishes and glazes), adhesives, sealants and printing inks
  • 09 Waste from the photographic industry
  • 10 Wastes from thermal processes
  • 11 Wastes from surface chemical treatment and coating of metals and other materials; non-ferrous hydrometallurgy
  • 12 Wastes from metal and plastic surface and physical and mechanical treatment
  • 13 Spent oils and liquid fuel residues (except edible oils, 05 and 12)
  • 14 Organic solvents, refrigerants and waste propellants (except for items 07 and 08)
  • 15 Packaging waste, sanitary napkins, rags, filter materials and protective clothing not otherwise specified
  • 16 Wastes not otherwise specified in the list
  • 17 Wastes from construction and demolition activities (including soil from contaminated sites)
  • 18 Waste produced by the health and veterinary sector or related research activities (except kitchen and restaurant waste that does not derive directly from health care)
  • 19 Wastes from waste management plants, off-site waste water treatment plants, as well as from water purification and its preparation for industrial use
  • 20 Municipal waste (domestic and similar waste produced by commercial and industrial activities as well as by institutions) including waste from separate collection.

A detailed list of current legislation can be downloaded here: (EWC- REGULATORY.pdf)