Recycling electrical goods is a tricky process. The EU are keen to ensure that no electrical goods get sent to landfill but are recycled efficiently, which is where companies like us come in. But what do the WEEE Regulations mean for your business, and what do you need to know about them?
Recycling Waste Properly
The WEEE Regulations came into effect within the UK in 2007 and are now established across all EU countries. WEEE stands for Waste Electrical and Electronic Equipment. The regulations ensure that any waste electronic equipment is recycled properly, and isn’t taken to landfill sites where it could cause damage to the environment.
WEEE Regulations require all manufacturers to fund the collection and recycling of their products when they come to the end of their life. The idea is to ensure that all electrical products get reused or recycled efficiently.
The proper handling of WEEE is covered by waste legislation, and anyone who wants to dismantle or treat WEEE for parts or materials needs a proper Environment Permit. They also have to provide a Duty of Care, ensuring that they store the waste properly to prevent any harm to the environment.
What Are WEEE Products?
WEEE is a term that covers a wide range of items, which can all be recycled and reused. Anything with a crossed out wheelie bin is a WEEE item, and must not be disposed of in landfill but recycled in a sustainable way.
Most light bulbs and lamps are covered by the WEEE Regulations. The following are all lighting equipment that are covered by the rules:
- Compact Fluorescent Lamps – otherwise known as energy-saving light bulbs
- Fluorescent tubes
- Metal halide lamps
- Mercury and blended lamps
- Sodium lamps
Filament lamps are excluded by the regulations, but ordinary household light bulbs are fine to be recycled.
Larger items covered by the WEEE rules are split into categories –
- Large household appliances – E.g. White goods
- Small household appliances – irons, kettles, toasters etc.
- IT and telecommunications equipment
- Entertainment Devices – radios, cd players
- Lighting Equipment
- Electric Tools
- Toys and Sports Equipment
- Medical devices – Dialysis machines, ventilators etc.
- Monitoring and control instruments – E.g. smoke detectors
- Automatic Dispensers – vending machines
- Display Equipment – televisions
- Cooling Equipment – fridge/freezer
- Gas Discharge Lamps
Your Waste In Good Hands
WEEE Regulations are necessary in helping to reduce our planet’s reliance on landfill sites. The mercury in a common light bulb is not a very harmful amount, but if all the light bulbs we throw away were sent to landfill, then they would be very damaging to the environment.
If you have electrical goods that you want recycling, then please ensure that you only pass them onto a company that is authorised to deal with them. It’s important that you ensure this is the case. If your waste later causes a problem, you could be held responsible.
You should also fill out a Waste Transfer Note sometimes known as a Hazardous Waste Consignment Note, which will accompany the waste and help others know how to handle it.
Here at Recycle Technology, we’re fully compliant with all legislation under the WEEE Regulations, and we are registered with the Environment Agency for all the necessary permits so you can be confident that your electrical waste is in good hands.
Don’t send your electrical goods to landfill sites, call us today on 01925 242 223 and get your waste recycled properly.