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WEEE processors criticise ‘unambitious’ Defra

March 16, 2018

(Credit: CIWM Journal)

The companies have responded to the British Government’s collection targets, and suggested an increase.

Following the news that Defra has lowered the WEEE collection targets in the UK for 2018, the AATF Forum has attacked the Ministry for its lack of ambition, according to

The forum, representing multiple Approved Authorised Treatment Facilities, where WEEE is treated and processed, has approximately 18 members, representing around 80 percent of the UK’s treatment companies. It has criticised the decision by Defra to lower targets, and called for a “robust system of WEEE management.”

“Defra is failing to meet the spirit and the environmental requirements of the WEEE directive,” the organisation explained in a statement. “The proposed targets lack ambition and make assumptions that the WEEE is simply not available. The Forum asserts that there is significant leakage in the system and the lack of incentive to collect WEEE provided by the Compliance Fee has led to potentially obligated WEEE being processed through informal – and often environmentally damaging – disposal routes such as illegal exports and non-accredited ATFs.”

AATF Forum continued: “Without a robust system of WEEE management, the UK’s treatment infrastructure is at risk of lacking the investment needed for sustainable growth to ensure that high environmental standards are properly applied and maintained.”

The Forum has suggested increasing the targets, calling for a rise of 3 percent, which would take the UK’s total target from 532,774 tonnes to 549,045.

“The Forum has put forward proposals to Defra to add ambition back into the targets to maintain achievable growth,” it explained. “It recognises the challenges caused by reduced new product sales, but there is still a huge gap of 772,000 tonnes between WEEE and EEE placed onto the market that is not explained.”


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