BIS launches consultation on how UK will meet recast WEEE recycling directive


A consultation has been launched by the Department for Innovation and Skills on how the UK will implement the recast WEEE directive from the beginning of 2014.

The Government intends to retain a market-based approach to the system for ensuring that producers fulfil their obligations under the directive. But it will look, as part of its Red Tape Challenge (RTC), as to whether concerns that the amount producers pay through compliance schemes is often much higher than the true costs of processing WEEE, as well as concerns that the administrative burden on small producers is too high.


It also plans that the UK will not go further than implementing the minimum requirements of the directive. The current UK regulations will be repealed and new regulations put in place to implement the changes brought about by the recast directive.

As part of the consultation, BIS has appointed WRAP to help it meet new targets through estimating the quantity of WEEE that is collected and treated outside of the operations of the regulations.

From 1 January 2016, the new targets mean the minimum WEEE collection rate will be 45 per cent of the average total weight of electrical goods placed on the market. This will increase to 65 per cent by 1 January 2019 with an alternative 85 per cent target suggested based on a “WEEE generated” methodology.

Writing in the introduction of the consultation document, Business Minister Michael Fallon said: “The revised directive presents us all with new challenges. Not least the need to achieve more challenging collection targets and increased product scope in the future. But the biggest challenge is to ensure we meet these commitments in a way that is as least burdensome as possible – particularly for producers and treatment facilities…

“…In summary, I am putting forward a package of measures in this consultation document that reduce the cost of compliance for producers and brings greater flexibility for local authorities, while minimising the business burdens of the revised directive.”

To view the consultation, click here