WEEE is short for Waste Electrical and Electronic Equipment Directive and is concerned with the safe and ecological deposal of electrical equipment. However, the onus to do this is placed on the equipment manufacturers.
The EU WEEE directive was implemented along with the restriction of hazardous substances in electrical and electronic equipment directive (RoHS) in February 2003.
These directives set targets for the collection, recycling and recovery of electrical equipment.
The directives place the responsibility for the disposal of waste electrical and electronic equipment (WEEE) on the manufacturers of such equipment. The aim of the directives is to ensure that manufacturers establish clear methods for collection of WEEE meaning that "Users of electrical and electronic equipment from private households should have the possibility of returning WEEE at least free of charge".
In addition to this the manufacturers must dispose or refurbish of the waste ecologically. Initially, under EU directives, European member states had to integrate these measures into domestic law. The deadline for this was 13th August2004. However, the UK along with others failed to meet this target.
Next: The Reasons for WEEE