Don’t fall foul of the recent WEEE legislation when disposing of your company’s redundant electrical and IT equipment, it could cost you dear in fines and penalties if your business is prosecuted by an action raised by the environment agency. The Waste Electronic & Electric Equipment legislation (WEEE) was enacted and introduced in 2007 in order to tackle the increasing number of redundant electrical and IT equipment which was becoming redundant after being superseded by more modern cutting edge replacements, and of course was being dumped in landfill sites across the country.
Mobile phones, computer equipment, monitors, laptops and many of the standard electrical equipment one is likely to find in a home or business contain heavy metals and elements which are toxic; arsenic, bromine, cadmium and mercury and many other examples of toxic material are inherent elements in the manufacturing process. Precious and semi precious metals which include palladium, gold, silver and platinum are also in the mix and these can be recycled for use in another process. It is estimated that by 2015 some fifteen million tonnes of redundant electrical equipment waste will be generated by European Union countries, an increase on the current latest figure of six and a half million tonnes.
The danger of placing all this waste in landfill is the potential for future leaching back into the ground of the heavy metals and toxic substances, substances which if they leach into the ground water supply can cause untold damage to the environment and to the health of plant, animal and human life. If one travels the world there are some horrendous health issues suffered by local populations where these poisons have been dumped without any forethought or planning; incidents of birth defects, cancer and other life threatening conditions are all markedly higher where there is increased levels of these toxins.
Keep the environment safe for now and for future generations by engaging the services of a licenced waste carrier, disposal company or officially licenced recycling plant and ensure your duty of care is not jeopardized or the business made to pay levied fines and costs for unlawful disposal of electrical and IT equipment.