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Not the Royal WEEE But Just As Important

February 24, 2012 | Comments: 0 | Views: 182

EC Directives (2002/96/EC) and (2002/95/EC) were introduced into the UK as WEEE Regulations in 2007. The primary aim of the WEEE Regulations is to minimise the generation of electrical and electronic waste through promotion of recovery, re-use and recycling.

The Regulations deal with plastics and metals, including hazardous substances such as mercury, which are contained with waste electrical and electronic goods from households as well as the commercial and industrial sector.

If your business is a producer of WEEE, then you must be a member of a Producer Compliance Scheme (PCS) that sets out treatment and recycling obligations based on WEEE collected at Designated Collection Facilities (DCFs).

'WEEE' with a 'wheeled bin crossed-out' has to be shown on all relevant products, and free in-store take-back schemes must be provided. Local Authorities have designated community recycling sites as DCFs and have received some funding for doing so through the Distributor Take back Scheme.

WEEE Re-cast

The European WEEE Directives have recently been 're-cast'. The provisional agreement on a revised Directive was reached in December 2011 and it is anticipated that the new requirements will apply from January 2014. The main changes are;

review of the scope exclusionsnew Member State collection targetshigher recovery, reuse & recycling targetstighter controls and higher penalties for illegal shipmentsnew Distributor/Retailer Obligations


The existing Directive has ten categories;

Large household appliancesSmall household appliancesIT & Telecoms equipmentConsumer equipmentLighting equipmentElectrical & Electronic ToolsToys, Leisure & Sports equipmentMedical DevicesMonitoring & Control InstrumentsAutomatic Dispensers

Under the re-cast Directive, this will be reduced to six 'open scope' categories;

Temperature Exchange EquipmentScreens & MonitorsLampsOther LargeSmall ICTOther Small

Agreed Exclusions


Military equipmentEquipment designed and installed as part of another type of equipment not within scopeFilament bulbsHousehold luminaires

From January 2014 'Open scope'

Equipment designed to be sent into spaceLarge-scale stationary industrial toolsLarge-scale fixed installationsThe means of transportNon-road mobile machinery for professional useR&D equipment only available on B to B basisInfective medical devices and in vitro diagnostic medical devices and active implantable medical devicesPipe organs installed in churches

Targets: Recovery and Re-use

Current Directive

80% recovery and 75% recycling for Categories 1 and 1075% recovery and 65% recycling for Categories 3 and 470% recovery and 50% recycling for Categories 2, 5, 6, 7 and 9No targets for Category 8

New Directive

Introduction of 70% recovery and 50% recycling for Category 8 immediatelyAll targets to be increased by 5% after three years, with a new 80% recycling target for gas discharge lampsWithin four years, the EC will examine the case for a mandatory 5% reuse target to be shown separately from the recycling target level

If you are a Producer /Manufacturer, you need to;

Register with one of the UK Environment AgenciesJoin an approved Producer Compliance Scheme (PCS)Make information about the amounts of EEE placed on the market available to the PCSMark all EEE placed on the market with the "crossed-out wheeled bin" symbolMake information available to treatment facilitiesAppoint an authorised representative in any other Member States in which you place product on the marketIf you are Authorised Representative, you need to fulfil the obligations of that producer or manufacturer

If you are a Distributor, you need to;

Provide information to consumers about the environmental impact of EEE and WEEE and about the separate collection of EEEFacilitate the take back of WEEE from consumers free of charge either by joining the UK Distributor Take-back Scheme or by taking back WEEE in-store on a 'like for like' basisFor retail outlets with an EEE sales area over 400m2, take back any small item of WEEE without an obligation to buy anything

Illegal Shipments

Introduction of minimum monitoring requirements for the shipment of WEEE / used EEENew Annex VI addresses widespread concerns over illegal exports and dumpingInterface with Waste Shipment Regulations


Summer 2012: OJ Publication of new Directive anticipated

Late 2012 or early 2013: UK implementation consultation exercise commences - this will bring in changes to make the operation of the UK system fairer & more transparent

Late 2013: New Guidance

January 2014: New UK Regulations will come into force

Eric Monson BSc

EMC Business Solutions aims to assist businesses in the development of environmental quality management systems, providing a platform for regulatory compliance, sustainable business growth and increased profitability.

Find out more at

Source: EzineArticles
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