Introduction to WEEE

Electronic waste, e-waste, e-scrap, or waste electrical and electronic equipment (WEEE) describes discarded electrical or electronic devices. 

 

The amount of WEEE generated in communities is growing rapidly. The content of hazardous components in electrical equipment is a major concern for environmental management.

All electronic scrap components can contain hazardous substances such as lead, cadmium or beryllium. Recycling and disposal of electronic waste can involve significant risk to both humans and the environment at large. As a result, great care must be taken to avoid any detrimental impacts from the disposing of WEEE.

The Waste Electrical and Electronic Equipment Directive (WEEE Directive) is the European Community Directive (2002/96/EC) on waste electrical and electronic equipment (WEEE). This Directive became European Law in February 2003. The aim of this legislation on waste electrical and electronic equipment is to address and minimise the environmental impacts of electrical and electronic equipment when it reaches the end of its life.

The WEEE Directive has been transposed into local law through the Environment (Waste) Regulations 2007 (WEEE Regulations). All electrical and electronic equipment used by consumers and electrical and electronic equipment intended for professional or domestic use are caught by the provisions of the WEEE Regulations.

There are ten main categories of WEEE described within the regulations. For a comprehensive list of WEEE products click Detailed List of WEEE

The WEEE Regulations encompass all electrical and electronic equipment in the above categories with a voltage of up to 1000 volts AC or up to 1500 volts DC.

A copy of the Gibraltar WEEE Regulations 2007 can be viewed at:

http://www.gibraltarlaws.gov.gi/articles/2007s125.pdf

Gibraltar set up systems to facilitate and encourage its separate collection, subsequent treatment, re-use, recycling and ultimately environmentally sound disposal of WEEE.

Businesses dealing in electrical and electronic equipment have to assist in the collection of WEEE by providing a free take back service to enable purchasers to return their WEEE, when making a like for like purchase of new equipment. Further details can be found at Businesses and the WEEE Regulations

Details on how to recycle WEEE products locally can be found at How to Recycle WEEE