WEEE Distributor Take-back Scheme at risk

The WEEE Distributor Take-back Scheme (DTS) enables 1,200 members to opt-out of their in-store take-back obligation under the WEEE Regulations

The WEEE regulations have a requirement for retailers to take back an item of WEEE when a customer purchases a new item of EEE, on a one to one basis.

The DTS was set up as a way for retailers to avoid this requirement by paying into the scheme instead, with the monies raised invested in collection infrastructure and projects aimed at increasing WEEE recycling. The Government were due to approve a proposal for the next phase of the DTS, scheduled to run from 1 January 2020, but due to the general election it is looking unlikely that it will do so before the end of the year.

If it is not approved before the end of 2019, under law all distributors of EEE will be required to offer take-back to B2C customers from 1 January 2020.

Criticised by industry

The new DTS proposal covers a two-year period whilst Government conducts a review of the WEEE system. According to the submitted proposal, the new phase of the DTS will “provide a financial encouragement to DTS members to expand the nature and scope of their in-store take-back facilities to develop best practice collections, as well as increased communication with the public about WEEE recycling.”

However, the proposal has been criticised by retailers and compliance schemes for not incentivising obligated retailers to offer a take-back service for consumers, particularly when WEEE recycling targets are struggling to be met.

There is particular concern that for large retailers, the cost to be part of the DTS is not financially burdensome enough, at a time when WEEE collection points desperately need to be expanded in the UK.

Arrange a WEEE collection

If your company would like to arrange a collection of WEEE, you can do so using our online WEEE collection request form.

Alternatively, if you would like to discuss how we can help set up a regular take-back service for your customers, please contact our team to find out how we can assist you.

Ben Luger

Marketing projects specialist

Ben joined the team at the beginning of 2015 and helps drive marketing communications and projects for Ecosurety, including project managing the launch of the Ecosurety Exploration Fund and website content development.

Written by Ben Luger Published 25/11/2019 Topics WEEE
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