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Householders will find information about recycling low energy light bulbs on the pages for Consumers.
Reuse and recycling of Waste Electrical and Electronic Equipment – WEEE
The WEEE Regulations were introduced to the UK in 2007. Their purpose is to make sure Electronic and Electrical Equipment (EEE) is recycled; keeping this harmful waste stream from landfill.
The regulations aim to improve the environmental performance of businesses that manufacture, supply, use, recycle and recover EEE. You may have obligations under the WEEE Regulations if you are a business which sells electrical or electronic equipment.
The WEEE directive covers a wide range of electrical and electronic products including TVs, DVD and video recorders, IT equipment, medical devices and monitoring and control instruments.
The Regulations affect all parties in the electronics industry in one way or another but the primary groups are producers who become responsible for financing the end-of-life treatment of their products, and distributors who become responsible in some cases for taking-back end-of-life products when new products are purchased.
The regulations require all producers of electrical and electronic equipment to join a compliance scheme which manages the process on their behalf, and schemes such as Recolight – which works on behalf of the lighting industry – provide these services free of charge to the end user.
Under the Regulations the producer funds its share of the collection, recycling and environmentally friendly disposal. But it is the end user that has ultimate responsibility for making sure the product is recycled when it reaches end of life.
2012 WEEE Directive recast and UK WEEE Regulation update
The EU published the WEEE Directive Recast in July 2012.
All EU Member states had 18 months to implement the changes. The UK government published the updated WEEE regulations in December 2013 and it was implemented in January 2014.
Along with the changes to the WEEE directive, the UK Government took the opportunity, through the Government’s Red Tape Challenge, to implement a system in the UK that is fair to all.
Member States recycling targets
There is a change to the targets given to Member States on the level of collections of WEEE.
The Member State target from 2016 applies to all WEEE – whether from household or non-household sources.
Move to an open scope
In January 2019, The Regulations move to an open scope. This means all products which meet the definition of electrical products are in scope, unless they are covered by an exclusion. The previous household luminaire exclusion has been removed bringing them into scope. Other lighting products coming into scope are wiring accessories such as plugs, sockets, switches
DOWNLOAD > Household luminaires and WEEE open scope – A Definitive Guide for Lighting Published by Recolight 2018
LED lamps are in scope within the UK.
Very small WEEE collections by retailers
Retailers with floor space of 400m2 or more dedicated to the sale of EEE, will be required to collect very small WEEE – defined as up to 25cm in any one dimension. This will therefore include a requirement to separately collect waste CFLs, unless they choose to join the Distributor Takeback Scheme.
The following is a summary of key changes, more detail can be found on the Recolight Blog
The WEEE regulations demonstrate that the government is fundamentally committed to changing the household WEEE system.
Changes implemented in January 2014:
Links to WEEE directive and regulation documents
Recolight supports the Joint Trade Associations (JTA) and have lobbied for a fair approach to the regulations.
The JTA is composed of nine trade associations, their members include: