legislation restricting the use of hazardous substances in electrical
and electric equipment (Directive 2002/95/EC) and promoting the
collection and recycling of such equipment (Directive 2002/96/EC)
has been in force since February 2003. The legislation provides
for the creation of collection schemes where consumers return their
used e-waste free of charge. The objective of these schemes is to
increase the recycling and/or re-use of such products. It also requires
heavy metals such as lead, mercury, cadmium, and chromium and flame
retardants such as polybrominated biphenyls (PBB) or polybrominated
diphenyl ethers (PBDE) to be substituted by safer alternatives.
Despite such rules on collection and recycling only
one third of electrical and electronic waste in the European Union
is reported as appropriately treated and the other two thirds are
going to landfills and potentially to sub-standard treatment sites
in or outside the European Union. The collection target of 4 kg
per person per year does not properly reflect the situation in individual
Member States. Illegal trade of electrical and electronic waste
to non-EU countries continues to be widespread.
Inadequately treated products pose major environmental
and health risks. In December 2008 the European Commission proposed
to revise the directives on electrical and electronic equipment
in order to tackle the fast increasing waste stream of such products.
The aim is to increase the amount of e-waste that is appropriately
treated and reduce the number that go to final disposal. The proposals
also aim reduce administrative burden.
The Commission proposes to set mandatory collection
targets equal to 65% of the average weight of electrical and electronic
equipment placed on the market over the two previous years in each
Member State. The recycling and recovery targets of such equipment
now cover the re-use of whole appliances and weight-base targets
will increase by 5%. Targets will also be set for the recovery of
Member States where the consumption of electrical
and electronic equipment is widespread would have more ambitious
targets under the new directive while others with smaller markets
will have less ambitious targets.
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Ecolamp provide WEEE regulations compliant storage, disposal, collection and recycling solutions for fluorescent lamps, high intensity discharge (HID) lamps,
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