U.K. Small Businesses Not Yet on Board with WEEE: Survey

U.K. Small Businesses Not Yet on Board with WEEE: Survey

a href="http://www.greenercomputing.com/reviews_third.cfm?NewsID=35577" target=new>One year after the introduction of the WEEE regulations covering electronic waste disposal in the U.K., a survey has found that many smaller businesses here are still unaware of the legislation.

The poll by free environmental guidance website NetRegs revealed that only 12 percent of small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) across the U.K. -- including just 10 percent in Scotland -- could name the regulations.

The 2006 Waste Electrical and Electronic Equipment (WEEE) Regulations require producers of electrical and electronic equipment to take financial responsibility for the treatment, collection and recycling of any waste electronic equipment they have produced since August 2005.

For those using electrical equipment, the legislation means they can return end-of-life equipment to the producer and avoid the cost of recycling or final disposal.

Claudette Hudes, NetRegs coordinator, said: "The good news for SMEs is that WEEE legislation can help businesses dispose of their electrical goods, as long as it was purchased after August 13, 2005, to finance its recycling or disposal. We strongly recommend that SMEs incorporate WEEE into their procurement procedures, so that when buying a new piece of equipment they check that the producer is legally registered and already conforms to WEEE."

She added, "Many sectors wrongly believe that WEEE is only relevant to businesses in the electrical sector. In fact, if you use a computer, a photocopier or even have a microwave in your staff kitchen, you need to be aware of what WEEE means for you."

Studies have found that U.K. businesses throw away one million tons of waste electronic equipment every year. SMEs can log on to www.netregs.gov.uk for more information about WEEE and all the environmental regulations that apply to them.