Legislation

Batteries

Batteries are regulated by The Batteries and Accumulators (Placing on the Market) Regulations 2008 (as amended) and the Waste Batteries and Accumulators Regulations 2009 (as amended).

Batteries are regulated to:

  • Tightly control their levels of mercury, cadmium and lead
  • Assist their recycling through clear labeling
  • Ensure that on disposal they are properly treated and recycled, rather than being sent for incineration or to landfill, both of which are illegal

Targets for recycling are in place:

  • 45% of portable batteries placed on the market to be recycled of which:
  • 75% by average weight of nickel-cadmium batteries and accumulators, including recycling of the cadmium has to be recycled;
  • Recycling of 50% by average weight of other waste batteries and accumulators

For Industrial/automotive batteries

  • Ban on landfill and incineration – therefore all batteries to be recycled
  • Recycling rate of 65% to be achieved

The Waste Batteries and Accumulators (Amendment)

Waste Electrical and Electronic Equipment (WEEE)

Electrical and electronic equipment (EEE) is regulated to reduce the amount of waste electrical and electronic equipment (WEEE) incinerated or sent to landfill sites. Reduction is achieved through various measures which encourage the recovery, reuse and recycling of products and components.

The Waste Electrical and Electronic Equipment Regulations 2013 (as amended) are the underpinning
UK legislation.

The regulations cover EEE defined in 10 broad categories;
1) LARGE HOUSEHOLD APPLIANCES
2) SMALL HOUSEHOLD APPLIANCES
3) IT AND TELECOMMUNICATIONS EQUIPMENT
4) CONSUMER EQUIPMENT AND PHOTOVOLTAIC PANELS
5) LIGHTING EQUIPMENT
6) ELECTRICAL AND ELECTRONIC TOOLS (WITH THE EXCEPTION OF LARGE SCALE STATIONARY INDUSTRIAL TOOLS)
7) TOYS, LEISURE AND SPORTS EQUIPMENT
8) MEDICAL DEVICES (WITH THE EXCEPTION OF ALL IMPLANTED AND INFECTED PRODUCTS)
9) MONITORING AND CONTROL INSTRUMENTS
10) AUTOMATIC DISPENSERS

WEEE Regulations

Other

The hazardous nature of waste batteries and certain categories of WEEE mean that they are governed by many different kinds of legislation to ensure safe storage, handling, transportation and recycling.