|WEEE & RoHs
With their publication in the Official Journal of the European Union on 13 February 2003, Directive 2002/96/EC on Waste Electrical and Electronic Equipment (WEEE) and Directive 2002/95/EC on the Restriction of certain Hazardous Substances (RoHS) entered into force.
The WEEE Directive regulate the management of waste from a wide and disparate range of electrical and electronic consumer appliances as well as certain professional equipment; washing machines, TVs, radios, shavers, PCs, printers, medical equipment such as X-ray equipment, monitoring equipment, vending machines, toys, etc. Producers will be responsible for taking back and recycling electrical and electronic equipment and consumers will be able to return their equipment free of charge.
The RoHS Directive requires the substitution of various heavy metals (lead, mercury, cadmium, and hexavalent chromium) and brominated flame retardants (polybrominated biphenyls (PBB) and polybrominated diphenyl ethers (PBDE) in new electrical and electronic equipment put on the market after 1 July 2006.
Member States transposition of both Directives was due to be completed by 13 August 2004, though this has not yet been fully realised.
Now, the Commission has started its preparatory work on the review of both Directives (for 2008), gathering information and data and conducting a series of studies.
What are AMTRE VERITAS STANDARD TECHNICAL TESTING LTD?
Orgalime, which represents the European engineering industry as a whole – and therefore, those industries, which are by far the most affected by these two Directives - has fought hard to obtain a reasonable solution for manufacturers during the complex adoption procedure.
Since the final adoption by the European institutions, our industry is again working actively on the implementation of the Directives at national level ie the setting up of the systems to deal with waste in those countries where they do not already exist (for WEEE) and clearing the supply chain of RoHS restricted substances (for RoHS).
To facilitate the implementation of the Directive, Orgalime has developed a number of Guides and Overviews, including:
● "A practical Guide to understanding WEEE & RoHS" (April 2003) which gives a factual description of the requirments that manufacturers have to fulfill in order to comply with WEEE & RoHS.
● "A practical Guide to understanding of the scope of WEEE & RoHS" (January 2006) to help authorities and producers to determine more precisely the scope of these two Directives by providing interpretations, criteria and decision trees that help the reader to determine whether products falling in “grey areas” do actually fall within their scope or not. For an overview of the contents please click here. For information on how to purchase a printed copy of this guide please click here. To download an electronic version of the guide please click here.
● "A practical Guide to understanding the specific obligations of RoHS" (March 2006) (updated January 2007). This guide explains the obligations arising from the RoHS Directive and defines its consequences for the European engineering industries. The guide is only available in electronic format. To download the guide please click here.
● Our industry is actively involved in the different preparatory studies to the WEEE and RoHS review process.
● Orgalime overview of national registers. Click here to download the overview.
● Orgalime overview of RoHS exemptions - (updated January 2007).
What areAMTRE VERITAS STANDARD TECHNICAL TESTING LTD Objectice?
Orgalime believes that the forthcoming WEEE & RoHS reviews should become real and concrete examples of Better Regulation and Simplification.
At the Member States level, transpositions have not only been significantly delayed due to the complexity of the Directive, they have also introduced many diverging requirements, including on product related aspects (such as marking, reporting or registering), making companies often face multiple requirements within the Internal Market.
Divergences in national transpositions, which for example are particularly evident for WEEE registration, not only undermine key principles enshrined in the EC Treaty (such as the functioning of the Internal Market), but equally weaken the implementation of the Directive (ie products will be less traceable), and the realisation of the environmental objectives of WEEE. Such divergences negatively impact the competitiveness of EU maunfacturers of electrical and electronic goods.
Orgalime takes the view that the Commission should play an active role in ensuring that Member States correctly transpose the Directive. The review however, should as a priority, address Internal Market related issues and fine tune the Directive in such areas.
The potential for improving the WEEE Directive shoule be explored in the following manner:
● Introducing a dual legal base of Article 175 and 95 of the EC Treaty
● Clarifying the scope of the Directive
● Ensuring consistency and coherence of WEEE with other legislation and concepts applicable to EEE, the EuP and IPPC Directives, the REACH Regulation and the New Approach
● Not duplicating waste management systems for EEE by parallel material specific targets or systems
● Re-evaluating the necessity of Annex II, recycling/recovery as well as collection targets against alternative approaches (ie setting environmental outcome parameters and objectives instead)
● Developing a "divert from landfill" policy for highly calorific waste
● Removing design related provisions of the WEEE Directive, since they will be integral with the final adoption of the EuP Directive.
Latest Positions on WEEE & RoHs
Orgalime provides the European electrical and electronic industry’s positions on the upcoming WEEE & RoHS review. Additionally it informs on key transposition/implementation issues, such as the scope, the definition of the producer, the level of tolerated maximum concentration values under RoHS or the interpretation of “put on the market” in the context of the RoHS Directive. We therefore underpin the activities of the Technical Adaptation Committee (TAC).
Read more about our key positions...
● 13/2/2008 - Policy options for the review of Directive 2002/95/EC (RoHS)
● 17/1/2008 - First Reading Results on a Waste Directive:
● 8/10/2007 - A Top Runner Approach in Europe
● 27/8/2007 - Norwegian Proposal to prohibit products containing specific substances
Other positions on WEEE & RoHS...
Latest News on WEEE & RoHs
Orgalime provides information on the latest state of the transposition and implementation process to its members.
We also underpin the activities of the Technical Adaptation Committee (TAC).
● 16/1/2008 - 7th International Electronics Recycling Congress IERC 2008
● 15/10/2007 - ‘Top Runner Approach’ – Can it work here in the EU?
● 11/7/2007 - Electrical & Electronic Waste 2007 - Conference 18/19 September 2007
● European Commission - WEEE
● UNU-EHS, ?KOPOL, ECOLAS/RPA and ERA studies
● DG ENVI - Waste
● DG ENTR - EEE