What is WEEE recycling and how does it benefit the environment?

WEEE recycling stands for Waste Electrical and Electronic Equipment, a European directive which aims to reduce the amount of e-waste that ends up in landfill. WEEE items must be disposed of in a way that does not harm the environment.

What is classed as WEEE waste?

WEEE relates to end-of-life electronic equipment and covers virtually anything with a plug or battery. There are ten broad categories of WEEE:

  1. Large household appliances
  2. Small household appliances
  3. IT and telecommunications equipment
  4. Consumer equipment
  5. Lighting equipment
  6. Electrical and electronic tools
  7. Toys, leisure and sports equipment
  8. Medical devices
  9. Monitoring and control equipment
  10. Automatic dispensers

Read further information on WEEE categories.

Why is WEEE recycling needed?

Technology is advancing at an astonishing rate: many of the electrical items being manufactured today are less durable than they used to be and gadgets such as mobiles and tablets quickly become obsolete when newer, slicker models become available. As a result, more products are being tossed out to landfill, with a staggering impact on the environment.

Every year an estimated 2 million tonnes of WEEE items are discarded by UK households and companies. Many of these items contain hazardous materials such as mercury and lead which, when disposed of without the correct waste processes, can pollute the air, ground and surface water, creating potential health risks.

What are the environmental benefits of WEEE?

Under the WEEE directive, any company that manufactures, imports, distributes or disposes of electronic goods must deal with end-of-life products using the correct procedures, resulting in some key benefits for the environment:

  • correctly disposing of WEEE items reduces the burden on landfill, meaning fewer harmful chemicals are emitted into the atmosphere
  • using recycled rather than raw materials to make new products helps to lower levels of greenhouse gases being sent into the environment

SDR’s commitment to WEEE

As one of the UK’s leading recyclers of redundant IT equipment, SDR offers a wide range of WEEE-compliant recycling and destruction options for your business.

Our end-to-end service includes the secure collection of IT equipment and disposal of all data. By choosing to work with SDR, you can be confident that your IT equipment will be recycled securely, ethically and with minimal environmental impact.

Ready to reduce your carbon footprint?

SDR will take the hassle out of managing your recycling responsibilities. Contact us today to discuss how our collection and recycling services will make your business processes safer for the environment.

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