How does one dispose of redundant electrical and electronic equipment without endangering the environment or adding to the potential of pollution for future generations? Simple; engage the services of a licenced operative or carrier and ensure that equipment is disposed of in accordance with the framework of WEEE. WEEE is the acronym of Waste Electronic & Electric Equipment which classifies all electronic and electrical equipment as controlled waste, thereby making it an illegal act to dump such equipment into landfill.
In most areas of the country there isn’t a provision made for businesses to dispose of their redundant equipment; certainly, local authorities do not allow the disposal of controlled equipment from businesses through their own waste management systems. The responsibility of a business owner and/or CEO of a company to dispose of controlled waste means that if the law isn’t complied with, the potential for large fines being levied and perhaps a resulting criminal record are real possibilities.
The legislation was put in place to combat the growing tonnage of waste which is estimated to exceed fifteen million tonnes in 2015 from EU countries alone, and to combat the increasing levels of cadmium, lead, arsenic, bromine and mercury in the environment.
These elements and toxins are all a necessary part of the manufacturing processes and many are essential for efficient functioning of modern electronic equipment. These toxins and heavy metals leach back into the environment over time and at present, no-one has any idea about the potential time bomb which is a legacy of previous unlicenced dumping of said equipment over many years – only time will tell.
What we can do is reduce the amount of non biodegradable waste ending up in landfill and making provision for a cleaner environment in the future rather than leaving the status quo. Taking steps to dispose of controlled waste starts with a phone call or email to a licenced operator or recycling company. Safe disposal, responsible disposal and of course mitigating the future risk potential of the danger posed by unlicenced dumping of controlled waste is the responsibility of everyone.