Today marks the start of National Recycling Week (12 – 18 September) in the UK, and CEF, in partnership with Electrical Waste, is urging installers to be clear on their obligations regarding electrical waste.
Although the Waste Electrical and Electronic Equipment (WEEE) Directive was re-cast in 2014, awareness of the regulations and how to comply is still very patchy. This means installers who are not compliant put themselves and their customers at risk. The government has set aside an additional £4.2m to tackle waste crime, so enforcement is becoming a reality for installers up and down the country.
Shaun Donaghey, Group Operations Director for Electrical Waste says: “Every year an estimated two million tonnes of WEEE is discarded in the UK – the majority of which is toxic and can have a long term impact on the environment and health. In addition, prosecutions are on the increase for companies who incorrectly dispose of their WEEE. Our message is therefore clear – regardless of whether your company is large or small, you need to act now to ensure you are WEEE compliant; doing nothing is no longer an option.”
CEF is the only electrical wholesale organisation in the UK to have their own electrical waste management business offering installers a one-stop recycling service and full compliance with all current legislation.
“Our message is therefore clear – regardless of whether your company is large or small, you need to act now to ensure you are WEEE compliant; doing nothing is no longer an option.”
Shaun continues: “Our service is unique and covers everything covered in the WEEE Directive in a single solution – which is basically everything with a plug or battery and includes fluorescent lamps and tubes; high-intensity discharge (HID) lamps and compact fluorescent lamps. We are also the only recycler in the UK able to process LED lamps.”
Every CEF branch offers a handy local drop off point for waste, or for larger jobs CEF can provide compliant containers on-site with a nationwide collection service which covers every postcode in the UK. All of the necessary paperwork is also covered to ensure that the audit trail is complete and more importantly to ensure that installers are 100% compliant with the law.
Shaun concludes: “In 2015 alone there were over 200 prosecutions issued by the Environment Agency against businesses and individuals for illegal waste activities with fines totalling in excess of £3 million. Installers need to be aware that if they don’t dispose of their WEEE correctly they could become part of this statistic. Finding a solution is therefore critical, but compliance doesn’t need to be difficult – in fact it is something that can be taken care of next time you are down at your local CEF branch.”