DIRECTIVE 2002/96/EC OF THE EUROPEAN PARLIAMENT AND OF THE COUNCIL of 27 January 2003 on Waste Electrical and Electronic Equipment (WEEE), also known as the WEEE Directive, represents a new challenge for EU Member States and traders. The primary purpose of this environmental policy is to preserve, protect and improve the quality of the environment, protect human health and utilise natural resources prudently and rationally. The directive is based on the principle that environmental damage should be rectified at source and that the polluter, i.e. producer, distributor or importer of equipment, should pay. The Directive imposes an obligation of responsibility upon all producers of electrical and electronic equipment, ranging from large and small household appliances, computers, TV sets, printers, electrical tools, medical devices and beverage dispensers.
Objectives of separate collection, recovery, reuse and recycling
The Member States should provide for the attainment of two basic objectives:
- to achieve a rate of separate collection of at least four kilograms on average per inhabitant per year of WEEE from private households
- to achieve required levels of recovery, reuse and recycling of the components for WEEE separately collected by the liable parties
The contents of the Directive:
- WEEE Directive - OJ L 37 - 13th February 2003
- WEEE Directive - amended, OJ L 345 - 31st December 2003
Essential provisions and requirements:
EU examples and campaigns
Voluntary collective WEEE management systems
Even before the implementation of the WEEE Directive, collective WEEE management systems were already operating in some European countries, and some of them began operations or are being established at an accelerated pace since the implementation of the WEEE Directive.
The WEEE Forum is an association of voluntary collective systems in Europe. It was established in April 2002, with the purpose of mutual information of collective systems and good practice exchange.
CECED (European Committee of Domestic Equipment Manufacturers), with its head office in Brussels, is an association of manufacturers of large and small household appliances and national trade associations in Europe. The main objective of CECED is to represent and defend European Industry interests in the dialogue with EU institutions.