WEEE Directive … The Waste Electrical and Electronic Equipment Directive (WEEE Directive) came into force in January 2007. The WEE Directive aims to both reduce the amount of electrical and electronic equipment being produced and to encourage everyone to reuse, recycle and recover it. The WEEE Directive also aims to improve the environmental performance of businesses that manufacture, supply, use, recycle and recover electrical and electronic equipment.
Import / Export
If you are an importer, rebrander or manufacturer of new electrical or electronic equipment then it’s likely that you’ll need to comply with the UK’s WEEE Regulations, which in part implement the WEEE Directive. If you do need to comply, then you must register on a producer compliance scheme.
You may also have obligations under the WEEE Regulations if you are a business with electrical or electronic equipment to dispose of, or if you sell electrical or electronic equipment. What is the impact of electrical and electronic waste? We throw away a million tonnes of household electrical and electronic waste every year in the UK. At least as much comes from non-household sources such as offices, factories, schools and hospitals. Electrical and electronic equipment (EEE) plays an ever-increasing role in our daily lives.
Our kitchen appliances, mobile phones and computers offer us many benefits during their working lives but when this equipment is thrown away it affects the environment. Waste electrical and electronic equipment (WEEE) is one of the fastest growing waste streams in the UK and the EU. Some WEEE contains hazardous substances and parts such as mercury in some switches, lead in solder and cadmium in batteries. Recycling rates for most types of WEEE (other than large ‘white goods’ – like fridges and washing machines) are very low.
The WEEE Directive covers a wide range of electrical and electronic products, although some are exempt from certain requirements. The types of products covered are: Large and small household appliances. IT and telecommunication equipment. Consumer equipment such as TVs, videos, hi-fi. Lighting, electrical and electronic tools (except large stationary industrial tools). Toys, leisure and sports equipment. Automatic dispensers. Medical devices (these are exempt from the WEEE recycling and recovery targets). Monitoring and control instruments.