EU WEEE legislation moves forward

In Europe, manufacturers will have to pay for recycling electrical goods ranging from refrigerators to laptop computers under an agreement reached recently by negotiators from European Union (EU) governments and the EU’s parliament.

AP news service reports that the European Commission, estimates that old appliances account for about six million tonnes (Mt) of waste across Europe, most of which currently goes into landfills. Under the new rules due to be phased in by 2006, the Commission hopes up to 75 per cent of goods such as toasters and washing machines can be recycled.

The industry warned that the new rules – which still need formal approval from governments and the European Parliament – will cost at least US$7.4 billion a year. “We’re talking about a fairly major cost that will be passed on to the consumer,” Adrian Harris, secretary general of Orgalime, an umbrella group representing appliance manufacturers. He said retail price increases could range from about US$0.50 for a small appliance such as a coffee maker to US$20 for a fridge. However, companies were generally pleased the new rules will make each manufacturer pay for recycling their own waste, instead of sharing costs across the industry.

The proposal would also ban the use of toxic substances such as lead, mercury and cadmium in such household appliances.

Ano da Publicação: 2002
Fonte: Warmer Bulletin Enews #38-2002
Autor: Kit Strange, Warmer Bulletin
Email do Autor:

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