March 2020 Newsletter

Newsletter: March 2020

The latest news regarding WEEE, e-waste, battery and packaging compliance

Compliance Is Going Digital

The use of Electronic IDs is becoming mainstream in the EU for WEEE, batteries and packaging compliance and is increasingly required to perform required compliance activities including registration and reporting. The European Union Directive 910/2014, eIDAS (Electronic Identification, Authentication and Trust Services), directs that from September 2018 all organizations using digital services must recognize electronic identification from all EU member states. At Accerio we are seeing this roll out as more and more countries are adopting this system, and countries outside of Europe increasingly have similar systems and requirements.

The use of E-ID’s provides safer and more efficient electronic interaction between businesses, citizens and public authorities, and these digital transactions have the same legal standing as paper transactions. The main purpose of the regulation is to strengthen the cross-border collaboration and to reduce the time and effort when it comes to some administrative tasks, and to provide transparency and inter-operability to support the new Digital Single Market.

Producers registered for WEEE, batteries or packaging in the European Union may need to apply for an E-ID in the EU member state where they sell from, and implement trust services programs in their business system, in order to comply with EPR compliance obligations. Some EU countries have had electronic ID systems in place for a few years, but it is a more recent development to have these IDs recognized in EU Member States other than the one where they were issued. Some countries already have their systems up and running and others are coming online now with partial implementation and limited access for a specific short list of countries, which is expected to expand.
As E-ID’s become more common Accerio will reach out as related changes occur that affect your registrations.

Singapore’s Electronic Waste EPR Program Goes Live

Singapore has launched their new electronic waste Extended Producer Responsibility program for electronic waste and packaging. The program is being rolled out in phases with phase 1 now in operation (active from January 1, 2020) with the establishment of a national Producer register requiring obligated Producers to register in order to sell electronic products covered according to the Resource Sustainability Act 2019.

Later this year phase 2 will come into effect and when the new packaging obligations apply. The remaining provisions of the program will be established by July 2021.

Producer requirements have some similarities to the EU WEEE responsibilities including:

  • Registration for obligated producers
  • Reporting weights and units sold
  • Join a Producer Responsibility Scheme (for specific producers)
  • Facilitate free takeback
  • Takeback reporting
  • Public Education

Unique features of the system influence obligations, which can include minimum thresholds and product scope, and individuals would need to be assessed to determine compliance responsibilities. Non-compliance carries significant financial penalties, including potential conviction of an offence under the Singaporean act and imprisonment, and the Act includes a provision for the right for authorized officers to conduct surprise inspections.

If you’d like to know more and understand your obligations in Singapore, please reach out to us on singapore@accerio.com and we’d be happy to conduct an assessment to determine if responsibilities apply.

EU Waste Regulations Amendments

The EU is currently reviewing the Waste Framework Directive, as part of the new Circular Economy Package. This will have an impact on all Member States and will create changes for WEEE, battery and packaging producers.

The outcome is projected to be a system that is in greater harmony with the tenets of a circular economy. The new model is expected to promote a growth in secondary markets for used but still functioning EEE, with an increased focus on making better use of EEE to reduce the amount of electronic waste and create products that are less polluting than previous versions.

The drivers of change for Member states will be:

  • Member States must facilitate:
    • Innovation of production
    • Models to reduce hazardous substances in materials and production
    • Encourage increased lifespan of products
    • Promote re-use and use of recycled products
    • Promote recycling of materials.
  • Minimum operating requirements for extended producer responsibility schemes.
  • Member States’ obligation to set up separate collection for paper, metal, plastic, and glass waste, and better measures for re-use of waste after its collection, and recycling.

The anticipated impacts from these programs on Producers are expected to include:

  • Product design changes to improve life-span, repairability, recyclability and re-useability of products and packaging, which may include requirements for example such as making repair manuals readily available
  • Increased standards for chemical/pollutant content of product material composition, with a stronger connection between waste compliance and chemical compliance (REACH and RoHS legislation)
  • A possible increase in reporting for adherence to new measures with e.g. declaration statements, quality control, self-monitoring, and accreditation requirements etc.

As the specifics of the program become available Accerio will keep you informed.

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