The Waste Electrical and Electronic Equipment Directive (WEEE) aims to minimise the impacts of electrical and electronic equipment on the environment during their life times and when they become waste. It applies to a huge spectrum of products. It encourages and sets criteria for the collection, treatment, recycling and recovery of waste electrical and electronic equipment. It makes producers responsible for financing most of these activities (producer responsibility), except for "historic waste". Private householders are to be able to return WEEE without charge.
The RoHS Directive will ban 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 either (PBDE) flame retardants from 01 July 2006. There are a number of exempted applications for these substances. RoHS takes its scope broadly from the WEEE Directive. Manufacturers will need to ensure that their products - and their components - comply in order to stay on the Single Market. If they do not, they will need to redesign products.
Comprehensive information about the two Directives and the consultation process can be found on the gov.uk website.
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