WEEE Ireland Laura Lynn

WEEE Pledge Battery recycling for Lauralynn

27th October 2014

WEEE Pledge – Ireland’s first free battery recycling programme for schools

WEEE Ireland, the largest compliance scheme in Ireland managing waste electrical and electronic equipment is focusing their activity to prioritise helping to increase the amount of e-waste recycled in Ireland annually.

Current industry legislation means, from 2016, 45% of WEEE items we purchase each year, (by weight comparison) will need to go through an authorised recycling system. This is set to increase further to 65% from 2019 onwards.

Battery targets are more immediate however, with legislation in place meaning Ireland is tasked with 45% take back of all batteries placed on the market required by 2016.

Working to achieve these targets WEEE Ireland works in partnership with local authorities in counties throughout the country through the provision of WEEE and battery recycling services at Civic Amenity Centres. In addition, coordinating with the local authorities to roll out free public collections, a system in place since 2005, at which members of the public can bring any of their unwanted electrical waste for recycling including old fridges, pcs, televisions and electrical toys and tools along with fluorescent tubes and batteries.

Ireland’s first free battery recycling programme for schools

With a constant focus on finding new ways to educate and increase recycling of WEEE and batteries in Ireland, WEEE Ireland launched Ireland’s first free battery recycling programme for schools. WEEE Pledge aims to encourage students and teachers to recycle their waste batteries in the WEEE Ireland blue battery boxes and teaches students and their families about the importance of recycling and being responsible for the environment. Since commencing in 2013 the WEEE Pledge programme has 1831 schools who have signed up to the WEEE Pledge programme and 16 tonnes of waste batteries have been recycled.

Battery recycling for Lauralynn

WEEE Ireland have a further focus on battery recycling with their ongoing battery recycling campaign ‘Spread a Little Sunshine’ in partnership with LauraLynn, Ireland’s children’s hospice. Every battery recycled by the publice in the WEEE Ireland blue battery box goes towards a monetary fund for the charity. More than €25 million portable waste batteries were collected in 2013 alone as part of the initiative, as a result €90,000 was donated by WEEE Ireland to Ireland’s only children’s hospice.

Current regulations also enforce the mandatory handover of WEEE from retail and recycling centre collection points, this is being rolled out ensuring the recycling feedstock is kept in an authorised treatment loop.

Since the 1st July 2014 an ‘environmental management cost’ has been in place on the purchase of all large household appliances. As a result of this cost, funds are being distributed to the retailers, local authorities and the EPA. The fund is being allocated to retailers based on the percentage of WEEE returned. Retailers are being encouraged to use these funds on a marketing campaign to promote the take back of WEEE through improved signage and promotion events at Civic Amenity Centres.

Other renewed priorities in current legislation include:
• All re-use organisation are be obliged to register with the WEEE Register Society (WRS).
• This means that ‘producers’ of photovoltaic solar panels now have responsibilities under the regulations to put an environmental management system in place when they reach the end of life as WEEE.
• Clarification on the rules for registration by producers from abroad in Ireland ensuring they can now register for their producer responsibilities in Ireland.

For further information about WEEE Ireland visit www.weeeireland.ie