WEEE Ireland: 2013 figures showing a significant gap of 55% of WEEE items

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Source: WEEE Ireland

Dublin, Ireland — Ireland needs to put a stop to rogue collection and hoarding of electrical items (WEEE) if new EU recycling targets are to be met, WEEE Ireland has warned as they announced their 2013 recycling figures. WEEE Ireland, the Irish compliance scheme for electrical and battery recycling, has released the results of their annual report, revealing an overall increase in the tonnage of WEEE recycled in Ireland for the year. However, a change in certain recycling behaviour is required if Ireland is to achieve a significant increase in WEEE take back by 2019.

In 2013, 25,651 tonnes of WEEE was collected and recycled by WEEE Ireland, this equates to 45 per cent of all WEEE items placed on the market by their members. These figures are an increase on previous years, but show a significant gap of 55 per cent of WEEE items on the market that are not being disposed of correctly and entering the proper WEEE recycling channels.

Leo Donovan, CEO of WEEE Ireland, said; ”The continued rise in the number of ’non-authorised‘ collections and improper recycling of WEEE being carried out across the country is of huge concern to us. Despite the recycling of unwanted electrical and battery waste being free and easy to do, not all of this waste is making its way back into an authorised system. As a result of these ‚rogue‘ collections Ireland may be at risk of not achieving its challenging future EU recycling targets. The other issue here is that rogue collectors are not properly recycling WEEE, which is a serious issue for the environment.”

WEEE items not recycled correctly

Another factor that WEEE Ireland has identified as contributing to the 55 per cent of WEEE items on the market that are not being recycled correctly is the number of items that people are hoarding in their homes. Households up and down the country have many items of WEEE waste sitting idle that could be recycled.”

Leo Donovan added: “During the Saorview campaign we saw an unprecedented rise in the number of televisions recycled. People tend to store electrical items in the garage, under the stairs, in attics, instead of simply bringing it to an authorised collection for free recycling. We are urging people not to keep electrical waste and waste batteries lying around the house.”

New targets

WEEE Ireland have outlined a number of actions that will make it as easy as possible for households to recycle their items through an authorised system and increase our overall recycling rates ensuring to achieve the new EU recycling targets by 2018.

New e-waste legislations sets target of 65 per cent of WEEE items purchased each year to be recycled through authorised systems by 2019. This means 25,000 tonnes of electrical waste was collected by WEEE Ireland in 2013 including:

  • 505,000 units of Large household appliances
  • 5,512 000 units Small household appliances
  • 2,576,000 units of Lamps
  • 432,000 units of TVs
  • 66,000 units of Fridge/freezers

Source: WEEE Ireland