The WEEE Regulations Six Years On ADD LINKS
The 1 July 2007 marked the start of full producer compliance scheme obligations under the WEEE directive in the UK. Six years later and with big changes to the regulations underway, we thought it would be a good opportunity to take a step back and see how far we’ve come.
Which lamps do the WEEE Regulations cover?
End-of-life lamps such as LEDs and Gas Discharge Lamps (including Compact Fluorescent Lamps and fluorescent tubes), are covered by the WEEE Regulations and must be recycled responsibly. They contain a small level of mercury that could potentially damage the environment if significant quantities were to end up in landfill.
The Regulations oblige manufacturers to fund the collection and recycling of their products when they reach end of life, which they usually do by joining a Producer Compliance Scheme. This scheme then manages the process on their behalf, and schemes such as Recolight provide these services free of charge to the end user.
Key changes to the WEEE Regulations for the lighting industry
- LED and gas discharge lamps in the same category;
- Overhaul of the household WEEE system to make more equitable;
- Wider scope in 2018 which will include household luminaires;
- Collection targets increase to 45% by 2016, and 65% by 2019
We’ve been talking about the up-and-coming changes for the WEEE Regulations for months, now we must wait for the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills to announce their plans for implementation.
This time next year the regulations will be in place and a new era for those industries involved in WEEE will have begun. What that era will look like however, is the million dollar question we’re all asking.