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The Battery Act in Germany
The Battery Act (in short: BattG) has been in force in Germany since 2009. It replaced the Battery Ordinance, which had been in force up to then, and implemented in Germany the EU Battery Directive on the regulation of the distribution, return, and ecological disposal of batteries and accumulators. The Battery Act from 2009 underwent extensive amendments, which took effect on 1 January 2021 (BattG2). Additional amendments are expected starting in 2022. Because every country in the EU has its own battery legislation, the Battery Act (BattG2) applies in Germany only.
The imposing of legal obligations via the Battery Act is meant to increase the number of batteries and accumulators being returned. Although it is true that batteries and accumulators contain valuable substances that can be returned to the cycle through recycling processes, they also contain substances that are harmful to the environment and to health. These harmful substances must be disposed of in a technically correct manner.
- Zentek’s full service for fulfilling your obligations under the Battery Act
- registration of your batteries and accumulators with the stiftung ear
- submission of the volume report to the Stiftung GRS Batterien
Who does the Battery Act apply to?
The obligations under the Battery Act apply to those business undertakings that commercially put batteries or accumulators on the market for the first time in Germany or that offer them for sale for the first time in Germany. In addition to production, this also includes the importing and distribution of dealer brands. These business undertakings are deemed manufacturers, importers, or even foreign sellers and must be registered as such in the battery register of the stiftung ear for all battery brands and types. Registration must take place before a business undertaking puts batteries or accumulators on the market for the first time in Germany. Manufacturers must also submit regular reports of the volumes of batteries and accumulators put on the market by them in Germany.
- Industrial batteries are used for industrial and agricultural purposes and for powering electrical and hybrid vehicles
- Vehicle batteries are batteries used for igniting and starting the motor in motor vehicles and for their lighting
- Enclosed batteries are hand-held (portable) batteries for use in various devices
Which obligations apply?
Manufacturers and first distributors of batteries have to warrant the taking back of these batteries and the technically correct waste-disposal of them. Those selling batteries are obligated to take back those kinds of old batteries that they are offering new for sale. The same applies to all three types of batteries. In addition, the taking back of hand-held (portable) batteries must be ensured not only locally but also via a return system that operates throughout the whole of Germany. Automobile batteries are subject to mandatory deposit fees. The intention here is to increase the number of old batteries being returned and the recycling of batteries and to reduce the illegal disposal of them.
Batteries and accumulators must also be labelled correctly and must exhibit mandatory notifications in a manner clearly recognisable to end consumers. Batteries containing hazardous substances are subject to special labelling requirements, and above a certain prescribed value, their sale is prohibited.
When you work together with Zentek, a personal contact person will be assigned to you and will accompany you all along the way. Our comprehensive services include providing you not only with advice but also performing all of your administrative tasks for you.
Volume reports can be reported to us by you either on a monthly or an annual basis. This means attractive prices and conditions for you. Do you have questions? Then please don’t hesitate to contact us!
Do you need documents? Or do you have questions?
The obligations under the Battery Act apply to those business undertakings that are considered ‘manufacturers’ or ‘distributors’ of batteries. ‘Manufacturers’ are defined as those business undertakings that, for commercial purposes and within the scope of application of the Battery Act, put batteries on the market for the first time.
‘Distributors’ are those who, for commercial purposes and within the scope of application of the Battery Act, offer batteries to end consumers. The aim of such an offer is the concluding of a sale contract and it also contains a request to accept the offer. Included here are also importing activities and dealer brands.
Primary batteries, secondary batteries, and accumulators all fall within the scope of application of the Battery Act. In contrast to secondary batteries and accumulators, primary batteries are not rechargeable. The Battery Act divides batteries into three classes: industrial batteries, vehicle batteries, and hand-held (portable) batteries.
‘Putting on the market’ within the meaning of the Battery Act means the nongratuitous or gratuitous supplying of batteries and/or accumulators to third parties, the aim of which is the distribution, the consumption, or the use of them. Included here is also the commercial importing of batteries to an area within the scope of application of the Battery Act. Excluded here are batteries provably being exported to areas outside the scope of application of the Battery Act.
Manufacturers, distributors, and importers must reckon with a variety of sanctions if they violate the Battery Act. Fines of up to 100,000 euros or other administrative measures, such as the confiscation of profits, could be imposed. Other risks include subjection to cease-and-desist orders instigated by competitors, or monetary expenditures ensuing from legal disputes and/or from having to pay damages. Violations of the Battery Act are generally accompanied automatically by a prohibition of distribution.
Registration with stiftung ear has to be made before batteries and accumulators are put on the market. Distribution in Germany is prohibited if the types of batteries being put on the market have not been properly registered and reported.
Yes, some batteries are exempt from the Battery Act. These include:
- batteries in military objects. These are objects that primarily are meant to protect the security interests of the Federal Republic of Germany.
- batteries in weapons, munition, and defence materials. Not included here are products that are not specifically procured or used for military purposes.
- batteries in military objects intended for use in space.