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Majority of B2B WEEE collections “not reported”

Majority of B2B WEEE collections “not reported”

May 29, 2013

imagesCAUBB1DDFindings of paper suggests more needs to be done to ensure aims of Extended Producer Responsibility are met.

In a new paper, Business-to-Business Information Technology (B2BIT) User Practices at End of Life in the United Kingdom, Germany and France, it has been noted that organisations needing to access business waste electrical and electronic equipment (WEEE) in Europe in order to fulfil their Producer Responsibility obligations are experiencing significant competition from new market entrants collecting WEEE for recycling, claiming that as businesses merge to capitalise on the resource value of WEEE, there is a lack of clarity around material flows and treatments that could impact producers’ legal obligations to finance recycling.

The research, written by LRS Consultant Richard Peagam and published in the Yale Journal, indicates that recycling and refurbishment of B2B IT units at end-of-use is common, but it is likely that these units are not reported by businesses. It therefore suggests that the networks and operational practices of these streams need to be better understood when developing business strategies and government policies so that the goals of Extended Producer Responsibility (EPR) for B2B IT WEEE can be achieved.

Commenting on his findings, Peagam said: “I hope the information in my paper will benefit government, compliance schemes and organisations along the electrical and electronic equipment supply chain.  It is a good source of evidence about the B2B WEEE market in Europe and with the materials used in electrical and electronic equipment becoming widely recognised as a commodity, there are both opportunities and risks for organisations along the supply chain, including producers, collectors, compliance schemes and re-users/recyclers.  The evidence I have presented highlights the risks to producer responsibility and should stimulate ideas to overcome them.”

The paper comes as the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills (BIS) holds a consultation about WEEE and the UK government looks to implement changes to the WEEE system to intervene in the electrical and electronic equipment supply chain – actions that have been supported by electronic equipment manufacturers and the Joint Trade Association.

Categories : Around the Industry

Tags : Environment Europe WEEE

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