What is WEEE?

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WEEE is a huge spectrum of products from computers, printers and faxes, to washing machines, fridges and even fluorescent tubes. At least two million tonnes of WEEE from domestic and commercial sources is discarded in the UK every year. And this figure is growing. We need to take action now.
The 10 categories of WEEE are:

  1. Large household appliances
  2. Small household appliances
  3. IT & telecommunications equipment
  4. Consumer equipment
  5. Lighting equipment
  6. Electrical and electronic tools
  7. Toys, leisure and sports equipment
  8. Medical devices
  9. Monitoring and control instruments
  10. Automatic dispensers

There are also 3 sub categories when WEEE 1-10 contains hazardous waste:

  1. Display Equipment
  2. Refrigeration Equipment
  3. Gas Discharge Lamps

The WEEE Directive is European environmental legislation. It aims to address the environmental impacts of WEEE, and to encourage its separate collection, and subsequent treatment, re-use, recovery, recycling and environmentally sound disposal.

The RoHS Directive (the Restriction of the use of certain Hazardous Substances in electrical and electronic equipment) came into force on 1st July 06. This Directive bans the placing on the EU market of new electrical and electronic equipment containing more than agreed levels of lead, cadmium, mercury, hexavalent chromium, polybrominated biphenyl (PBB) and polybrominated diphenyl ether (PBDE) flame retardants. With the new regulations impacting on us all, we need to know our responsibilities with regards to the correct disposal of electronic equipment but often don’t know where to turn.

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