Do you know what WEEE stands for?
EU Waste Electrical and Electronic Equipment (WEEE) Directive came into force in the UK 2007, becoming law in 2014 and simply encompasses any electronic item attached a plug. It is primarily a producer and distributor waste law and seeks to control the responsible disposal of electrical items. The aim is to prevent items being dumped into landfill by using the reduce, reuse, recycle and recover motto. Waste management and handling companies are required to comply with the directive when removing WEEE from households or company premises.
Targets for recycling
Regulation targets have been set and are under revision, both for household and non-household users with the UK target to recycle 50% of all waste, including WEEE by 2020.
In the UK alone households and businesses produce staggering 17 tonnes of waste each in total each year. Some of this is electronic waste which contains hazardous substances and must be appropriately disposed of to avoid polluting the environment. All households and businesses have a duty to ensure all electronic waste is removed in an appropriate manner, just as we would do with our household paper, cardboard, glass and cans. All electronic equipment dependent on age needs to be taken away for responsible disposal to ensure it is not dumped into landfill.
As technology evolves so fast and is designed to have a short lifespan, the amount of WEEE to be disposed of has increased dramatically. If we think about the average lifespan of a laptop being a mere 4 years and the fact that it’s often more expensive to mend the parts, it’s no surprise that the product is completely replaced rather than repaired.
Don’t forget mobile phones
There are currently more mobile phones in use on the planet than people. Manufacturers do not make it easy for the public to repair these items ourselves when they break or become out of date. Instead we take it back to the store or replace it with a new model rendering the old model redundant. Plus, with technology evolving at an incredible speed, and our ever-increasing desire for new and exciting features, the 24-month contract with a new phone at the end of it is an attractive prospect. Despite this, research carried out by Wrap has revealed that half of consumers would consider a refurbished model if it was sold by a reputable retailer.*
Luckily most components within your old smartphones, PC’s and electronics can be recycled. Once dismantled, and hazardous parts such as the battery are removed, the items are placed into a shredder. Metals make up a large proportion of materials in EEE products. Various metals contained within the electricals including steel, iron, copper, silver and gold separated out, melted down and sold on. The plastics are also sorted, and the small fragments sold to plastic recyclers.
Luckily recycling your electronic waste has never been easier. You can prevent your businesses electronic waste from ending up in landfill by using our secure collection service. The Shredding Alliance collect and recycle your old PC’s, laptops, monitors, mobile phones and many more.
Contact us for a quote for removing your all your electronic waste.