End User Obligations Under the Waste Electrical, Electronic Equipment (WEEE) Regulations
As a business end-user of electrical and electronic equipment (EEE), you have a duty of care and obligations under the WEEE Regulations to ensure when you choose to dispose of it at the end of its life, that you arrange for the treatment, recycling and recovery of this WEEE in line with the requirements of the Regulations
Purpose of the Waste Electrical and Electronic Equipment (WEEE) Regulations
The WEEE Regulations were first 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.
Following the recast of the EU WEEE Directive, the UK government published the updated WEEE regulations in December 2013 and it was implemented in January 2014.
The regulations aim to improve the environmental performance of businesses that manufacture, supply, use, recycle and recover EEE.
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.
Under the Regulations the end user has ultimate responsibility for making sure the product is recycled when it reaches end of life.
If a business does have WEEE to recycle, it has a Duty of Care to act responsibly and ensure that the contractor it appoints to collect the WEEE is legitimate and has the appropriate licences and permits. A business should ensure that:
- the haulier or AATF collecting the WEEE is a registered waste carrier or other approved person;
- the waste is accompanied by a waste transfer note or hazardous waste consignment note (as appropriate);
- the waste is taken to a suitable facility to be treated and recycled, i.e. the site has a permit or licence that allows them to accept trade waste; and
- it obtains and keeps proof that WEEE was given or sold to a waste management (or asset management) business, and was treated and recycled in an environmentally sound way.
For more information on your options and obligations please see the guidance provided by WRAP Business users of electronic and electrical products