New WEEE Regulations

New WEEE Regulations


Author: Sophie Wilkinson

BIS has published a response to its consultation on implementation of the Recast WEEE Directive 2012, along with draft Waste Electrical and Electronic Equipment Regulations 2013.

The consultation also considered how to cut compliance costs relating to WEEE in accordance with the red tape challenge.

Implementation of the Recast WEEE Directive
In response to the requirements of the Recast Directive, the Government has decided to:

  • include photovoltaic panels in category 4
  • move to an open scope of EEE from 15 August 2018
  • require certain retailers to take back very small WEEE free of charge with no obligation on consumers to buy EEE of an equivalent type

Meeting the Red Tape Challenge
In order to reduce the regulatory burden associated with WEEE the government has decided to:

  • set a de minimus threshold, whereby those producing less than 5 tonnes of electrical and electronic equipment (EEE) per year will not be required to join a WEEE compliance scheme
  • introduce a system whereby from 2014 onwards producer compliance schemes will be set collection targets based on historic data with 'compliance fees' payable where the targets are not met. The risk of over collection will be reduced because trading of WEEE evidence will not be allowed after treatment (although schemes will be allowed to contract with each other ahead of collections)
  • make it possible for designated collection facilities to elect to treat WEEE

Next steps
It is expected that the final version of the revised regulations will be laid before Parliament before the end of the year and come into force on 1 January 2014.