Statement from the Registrar: Third update on the inspection of battery producer compliance under the Batteries Regulation

On October 27, 2022, all battery producers with management requirements were issued a Notice of Compliance Requirement advising that they are out of compliance with s.14 (Management of batteries) of Ontario Regulation 30/20 (the Batteries Regulation), which, among other things, requires producers to use processors registered with RPRA to meet their resource recovery requirements. Read the Notice here.

The notice was issued following an inspection of the Used Battery Management System undertaken by RPRA’s Compliance and Enforcement Team. Read the Registrar’s Statement dated April 14, 2022, announcing the inspection.

This is the second notice issued to producers. The first notice was issued on September 7, 2022, to all battery producers using Call2Recycle as their Producer Responsibility Organization (PRO) to meet their regulatory requirements under the Batteries Regulation and was related to s. 8 of the Batteries Regulation, which outlines requirements to establish and operate a compliant used batteries collection system. Read the Notice here. And, read the subsequent update on the inspection issued on October 6, 2022, here.

As a reminder to all battery producers, under Ontario’s producer responsibility regulatory framework outlined in the Resource Recovery and Circular Economy Act, 2016 (RRCEA), individual producers are accountable for meeting the requirements of the RRCEA and its associated regulations. This means that a producer cannot assign its regulatory obligations to a third party such as a PRO or processor, and that producers will be subject to enforcement action for failing to address noncompliance with the RRCEA and its associated regulations.

Producers that have retained a PRO to meet their regulatory requirements are encouraged to engage with their PRO to understand the steps being taken on their behalf to address the noncompliance identified to date.

Producers are also encouraged to engage with their PRO to understand how the PRO is planning to comply with additional requirements under the Batteries Regulation that will apply starting January 1, 2023. From this date, producers will only be able to meet their resource recovery targets using battery processors that have submitted a report confirming that they satisfy the following requirements:

  • have an average recycling efficiency rate (RER)[1] of at least 70% for rechargeable batteries and at least 80% for single-use batteries;
  • direct 15% or less of their recovered resources for use as aggregate for the purposes of calculating their RER; and
  • include the resources recovered from a downstream processor in their RER.

A processor’s RER is calculated as per RPRA procedures and audited by a licensed professional engineer. Processors are also subject to RPRA field inspections to verify their reported RER.

The RER requirement applies to all processors processing batteries for the purposes of meeting a producer’s resource recovery requirements under the Batteries Regulation, whether they are required to register or not.

As of October 2022, the following processors have submitted RER verifications and can be relied on by producers to meet their management targets in 2023:

  1. Raw Materials Company Inc.
  2. Retriev Technologies Ltd.

This list is subject to change. A current list is maintained here on RPRA’s website.

If a PRO uses a battery processor not identified above to meet a producer’s 2023 resource recovery requirements under the Batteries Regulation, that producer will be out of compliance and may be subject to enforcement action, including:

  • Compliance Orders, which are required to be publicly posted on RPRA’s website,
  • Administrative Penalties, if the Administrative Penalties Regulation is finalized, and/or
  • Prosecution.

[1] An RER is the ratio of the weight of resources recovered from batteries received by a battery processor to the weight of batteries received by that battery processor.