The Waste Electrical and Electronic Equipment Regulations (WEEE)

In January 2007 The Waste Electrical and Electronic Equipment Regulations 2006 (WEEE) were introduced. The regulations control the disposal of both household and commercial electrical and electronic goods going to landfill by increasing the amount of re-use and recycling.
Due to advances in technology waste electrical and electronic equipment is one of the fastest growing waste streams. In an office IT and telecommunication equipment, lighting (inc.lamps and bulbs) are specific examples of waste electrical and electronic equipment. Component parts may be hazardous and contain substances such as mercury, lead and cadmium.

WEEE regulations summary;-

Historic WEEE (waste electrical and electronic equipment produced before 13th April 2005)
Historic WEEE the producer (manufacturers, retailers, branders and importers) has a responsibility for the recovery and treatment of waste electrical and electronic equipment and should put a process in place to allow businesses to return their waste free of charge to their distributors when ordering a similar product as a replacement.

If no similar replacement product is being sought then the business will have to pay in order to dispose of waste electrical and electronic equipment in an environmentally friendly way. Business should also keep a copy of the waste transfer note as proof, this must be supplied by the waste carrier when collecting waste for processing.

New WEEE (waste electrical and electronic equipment produced after 13th April 2005)
New WEEE can be identified by a crossed out wheeled bin symbol. The producer (manufacturers, retailers, branders and importers) has a responsibility for the recovery and treatment of the waste electrical and electronic equipment and should put a process in place to allow businesses to return their waste free of charge to their distributors at any time. It is good practice obtain the producers registration number when purchasing  electrical and electronic equipment in order to identify the producer at a later date.

Enforcement
The regulations are enforced by the Environment Agency and non compliance may result in conviction, fines and could cause damage to the reputation of a business.

If the producer of the electrical and electronic equipment refuses to take back your waste you should contact the enforcing authority.


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WEEE Regulations