The UK Government released its Post Implementation Review of the Waste Electrical and Electronic Equipment (WEEE) Regulations 2013 earlier this month.
A Post implementation review (PIR) is a process used to assess the effectiveness of a particular regulation after it has been implemented for a period of time. Usually completed five years after the introduction of the regulations, the review of WEEE was originally expected to take place in 2019.
The most recent update to the Waste Electrical and Electronic Equipment Regulations was in March 2018, which made it compulsory for all Producer Compliance Schemes to join the PCS Balancing System (PBS), which manages and funds the collection of excess WEEE from designated collection facilities run by local authorities.
The WEEE Post Implementation Review considered a range of information, which included the consultation summary and response to the 2017 WEEE consultation published in May 2018, correspondence from Producer Compliance Schemes (PCSs) and trade bodies, compliance fee proposals, Environment Agency statistical data, and data from the PBS administrator.
A PIR seeks to establish whether, and to what extent, a regulation has achieved its original intended objectives and the review concluded that the 2013 WEEE Regulations have:
Whilst the review states that there is clear evidence to show that the 2013 WEEE Regulations achieved the objectives, it adds that the Government’s Resources and Waste Strategy for England has set out strategic ambitions to maximise the value of resource use and to minimise waste and its impact on the environment. Where the existing legislation does not match these ambitions, new powers will therefore be used to strengthen it.
The government says it will consult on changing the waste electrical and electronic equipment (WEEE) and batteries producer responsibility regimes to incentivise more sustainable product design, increase recycling and alignment with the wider EPR framework. This will be done by the end of 2020, with the regulations then amended as necessary.
The consultation will explore options for how to approach the growing numbers of internet sellers, free riding, and the Distributor Take-back Scheme as a mechanism designed to fulfil the retailers’ obligations.
Vikkie Fitzgerald, Head of WEEE at Clarity Environmental, said:
“Whilst it is positive news that the post implementation review has recommended the regulations to be carried forward, the sector must prepare itself for future amendments to the way the industry is regulated. With so many changes in market forces in more recent years, such as the growth in online retailers, the government must ensure the regulations remain fit for the purpose they were originally intended. We will continue to keep our members informed as we learn more about the timing and detail of the consultations that will inform how the government will achieve that.”
Clarity’s WEEE compliance scheme provides its members with low cost and simple compliance, alongside unrivalled member support. Sign up to our newsletter to receive regular updates on regulation changes and keep up with the latest industry developments. If you would like to discuss compliance with the WEEE regulations, get in touch with a member of our team at email@example.com or on 0845 129 7177.