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June 2022 Newsletter

Newsletter: June 2022

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

Colorado Passes Packaging EPR Law

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Colorado is joining Maine and Oregon on the short list of US states to pass EPR packaging legislation. Colorado HB22-1355 passed the state senate in May and was signed into law in early June. The bill aims to increase the state’s recycling rate from 15% to 80% through a program that will be fully funded by producers.

The primary obligated producers are product brand holders selling primary/sales packaging materials and paper products, though there is a small producer exemption. Producers are required to appoint a Producer Responsibility Organization (PRO) or establish an approved individual plan by the first program deadline in January 2025.

Accerio is monitoring for decisions on details like exact targets, approved PRO’s, and costs; so please reach out if you sell products into Colorado to stay updated on program development.

An Introduction to European Eco-Modulation

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Eco-modulation (part of the eco-design concept) penalizes the use of materials that are less environmentally friendly and rewards the use of those with lesser environmental impacts. Its general goal is to promote eco-design approaches with producers on issues like waste prevention, reduction of highly polluting materials , and increased product lifespan, all leading to a more circular economy. Then through the eco-modulation fee structure of collective organizations, producers receive a return on investment for their eco-design efforts.

The first European country to introduce this concept was France. However, it has been gradually introduced in other EU Member States and now at the EU level. In January 2023, the EU Eco-Modulation Directive will come into force. Although this legislation is not yet in force, several EU countries have begun implementation of their own eco-modulation models.

Examples include:

  • Germany: Collectives are obligated to charge lower fees for packaging consisting of more recyclable materials.
  • Netherlands: There is an option to apply for a fee discount for packaging containing plastic that has higher recyclability or residual value.
  • UK: The authority is considering eco-modulations in the upcoming review of WEEE and Packaging legislation. Additionally, a new plastic packaging tax has been implemented for plastic packaging containing < 30% recycled content.
  • Czech Republic: Provisions for Eco-Modulation are in the national legislation; however, they are not yet implemented by collective organizations.
  • Estonia: From 2023, the collective organizations will modify the fees for packaging containing one material vs. composite materials (multilayered packaging).

Deadline for Germany Packaging Registration

The packaging legislation in Germany was revised in 2021 (an article on the topic can be viewed here), with an important upcoming implementation date for all obligated producers of packaging. From July 2022 onwards, all producers need to be registered at the packaging authority Zentrale Stelle Verpackungsregister.

Registration is now also required for packaging that ends up in purely industrial environments and transport packaging, while the prior legislation only required registration for packaging subject to system (scheme) participation. Producers of ‘non-scheme packaging’ must also maintain records of packaging taken back, though regular reporting to the authority is not required.

The registrations for non-scheme packaging can be completed now. Producers who are already registered with Zentrale Stelle Verpackungsregister and a scheme are encouraged to assess if they are selling non-scheme packaging as well. In that case, the existing registration at the authority must be updated to indicate additional packaging types.

United Kingdom Packaging EPR Reform

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The UK Packaging EPR legislation, that has been in force since 1997, fails to cover the full costs of disposing of packaging waste. A new EPR legislation, currently under consultation, aims to transfer the full cost of treating household packaging to the producers. This would make the producer responsible for the costs of their packaging throughout its life cycle, also known as the “polluter pays” principle. For packaging waste arising from businesses, producers will be responsible for contributing to a portion of the costs associated with recycling it when it becomes waste, through purchasing price-variable packaging recycling evidence (PRNs) in line with their business waste recycling obligation.

The new EPR system will obligate producers of household packaging to:

  • Meet new recycling targets
  • Pay higher fees for less sustainable packaging
  • Use clear unambiguous recyclability labelling to help consumers sort waste

Through these requirements, the draft legislation would encourage producers to reduce packaging material usage and use a higher percentage of recyclable packaging. The law is expected to come into force in 2023 and will impact companies with a UK presence who place obligated packaging on the UK market.

June 2022 Newsletter Read More »

July 2021 Newsletter

Newsletter: July 2021

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

Upcoming Changes to Germany’s WEEE and Packaging Requirements

Changes to both the WEEE and Packaging legislation in Germany have recently been approved, expanding producer obligations.

The updated packaging law will come into force on the 3rd of July 2021 and the WEEE law on the 1st of January 2022. Both laws put more responsibility on fulfilment service providers and online retailers to confirm that their sellers are correctly registered.

German Packaging Act – Amendment 2021
Beginning the 3rd of July 2021, registration requirements with the Zentrale Stelle Verpackungsregister will apply to more producers and distributors, starting with final distributors of service packaging. Additionally, starting July 2022, the scope of obligated packaging requiring registration will be expanded to include all packaging types as well as packaging sold to professional/industrial environments.

Other changes include:

  • Optional appointment of authorized representatives for distance sellers
  • The extension of the deposit system to single-use PET beverage bottles and cans
  • Requirements for final distributors to offer reusable alternatives for single-use plastic

German WEEE Legislation Elektrogesetz 3
The changes under Elektrogesetz 3 primarily impact producers of professional products, coming into force over 2022 and 2023.

The requirements include:

  • Inform the authority about available take-back beginning in 2022
  • Expanded product marking of B2B EEE products in 2023

Sales/distribution of unregistered products is not allowed and carries risk of significant fines for noncompliance. With the earlier update of BattG2-2020 the German Battery legislation (BattG2) all three disciplines have now been resolved. Please contact Accerio for assessment of your company’s obligations under these changes.

UK Packaging Legislation and Plastic Tax

The UK has several big changes to their packaging legislation on the horizon. The first change is a new tax on plastic packaging that does not contain at least 30% recycled materials. This was outlined in our previous newsletter, but the start date of April 2022 is drawing closer, so please contact your packaging suppliers to obtain the evidence you require.

In addition to the plastic tax, the UK is replacing the packaging law under the EU Packaging Directive with more comprehensive Extended Producer Responsibility legislation. This will move the system to a single point of compliance along the packaging supply chain, instead of spreading it out through several links of the supply chain. This change obligates a single responsible party to cover the complete net cost of the recovery and recycling of their packaging. Additionally, the new legislation would shift the financial responsibility of curbside recycling and litter collection from local taxes to the obligated parties.

The legislation is not finalized, but the likely changes are:

  • A lower obligation threshold to obligate companies that handle more than 25 tonnes of packaging and have a turnover of at least 1 million GBP; this greatly expands the number of obligated companies
  • Introduction of modulated fees that requires more detailed reporting of packaging materials, including the kind of plastics used. The fee modulation reflects recyclability of packaging materials and will be required for reporting of 2023 sales
  • More detailed geographical reporting separated by England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland markets, instead of just UK as a whole as it is presently
  • A new labelling system for packaging to ensure end users can easily tell if packaging waste can be recycled. This is expected to come into force for some packaging by 2024/25 and other packaging by 2026/27, though details on packaging types included in each phase is not yet available

The legislation has closed the consultation stage and the finalized law may differ from what is laid out above. However, big changes are certain, such as the need for producers to gather more detailed product packaging information and budget more for UK packaging compliance from 2023 onwards. Accerio will continue to monitor this legislation and will be in touch with any impacted clients.

New Washington D.C. Battery Law

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Image courtesy of Marco Verch

Washington D.C. has approved Law 23-211 Zero Waste Omnibus Amendment Act 2020, which obligates producers for distance sales and retail sales of batteries starting 1 January 2022.

Washington D.C is the first US district/state/territory to introduce EPR laws for both small rechargeable and non-rechargeable batteries. US EPR obligations are rapidly expanding, so similar laws are likely to develop elsewhere to significantly increase battery obligations for producers.

The Washington D.C. Act has an extensive scope, obligating all chemistries of standalone batteries and batteries integrated into certain products, with exemptions of products containing batteries that are already covered under Washington D.C.’s E-Waste law and specified product types . Companies selling covered integrated and standalone batteries into Washington D.C. will be required to enroll in a district approved battery stewardship plan. Please contact Accerio for an assessment and more details on Washington D.C’s battery and e-waste requirements.

July 2021 Newsletter Read More »

February 2021 Newsletter

Newsletter: February 2021

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

EU Batteries Regulation Proposal

The EU Commission has made a proposal to repeal the current Batteries Directive 2006/66/ED and amend Regulation (EU) No 2019/1020. The proposed changes aim to harmonize the batteries waste compliance requirements among EU Member States and to standardize the registration procedure for producers and other actors in the supply chain.

There is an opportunity for public comment available to Producers and interested parties until March 1st, 2021, via this link. For Producers and Manufacturers of batteries, this is an important opportunity to have your voice heard about the proposed changes.
Important key proposed changes include:

  • Definition changes for the key terms “Producer”, ‘’Distributors’’, “Placing on the Market”, and “Making available on the Market”.
  • Battery manufacturers “not established in an EU Member State” will be required to appoint an Authorized Representative.
  • Electric vehicle batteries will be brought into scope as a fourth battery type.
  • Increased transparency of supply chain by establishing and operating a system of control and traceability.
  • A focus on increased collection of portable batteries, including increasing the collection target over time (65% by 2025, and 70% by 2030).
  • New information, labelling, sustainability, and safety requirements, including for example, a QR code to be placed on batteries.
  • The introduction of recycling efficiencies and recovery targets, with a schedule to increase over time, for specific raw materials, including lithium, lead, cobalt, copper, and nickel.
  • Extended producer responsibility (EPR) for industrial batteries.
  • Portable battery definition to include also batteries used in light vehicle (such as scooters and electric bikes) with a maximum weight threshold of 5 Kg.
  • Setting out in detail the model structure for the EU Declaration of Conformity.
  • Distributors of batteries will carry responsibilities to ensure Manufacturers, AR’s, Importers, and other distributors are appropriately registered to sell, and that the batteries are properly compliant with CE Mark, DoC and other requirements, including applicable documentation.

The 2020 European Green Deal’s New Circular Economy Action Plan has identified batteries as a category of products that are a high use of resources, but also great potential for recycling and circularity. The market demand for batteries is expected to dramatically increase over the next decade, especially for lithium batteries. The proposed changes are deemed necessary to address the urgent need for increased battery production, and investment and capacity expansion for recycling and handling capability.

 

 

French Repairability Index

France is the first EU country to implement a key element of the EU Circular Economy Package with the introduction of a Repairability Index for a selection of EEE products. This index is in force as of the 1st of January 2021. Products in scope will need to list the Repairability Index on the product packaging, on a label or online using a specific logo and color.

To begin with, products required to comply are the following:

  • Washing machines
  • TVs
  • Computers and Laptops
  • Mobile phones
  • Corded lawnmowers
  • Battery operated lawnmowers
  • Robotic lawnmowers

Producers or importers will be responsible for calculating and communicating the Index to all parties in the supply chain, and sellers both online and with a physical store must present the Index “in a visible manner on each product offered for sale/in the presentation of the equipment and close to its price”.

The Reparability Index is represented by a grade between 1 and 10, with calculations based on five specific criteria, to inform end-users about the “possibility to repair a product”.

The criteria are:

  1. Availability of the technical documentation, for use, maintenance, and repair
  2. Ease of disassembly, access, and removal of worn parts
  3. Availability of and access to spare parts
  4. Price of spare parts, especially relative to the cost of the item itself
  5. Product specific criteria such as accessibility to remote assistance for repair and possibility of a software reset.

The system will certainly evolve over time to include other requirements and quite likely an expanded product list, and in the early stages there are no sanctions for non-compliance. There are increased specifications planned; from 2022 manufacturers and importers will be required to provide essential spare parts, and in 2023 extended producer responsibility for financing the repair of products is expected. The Repairability Index will influence product design and purchasing habits, and other countries will soon follow suit.
If your products are in scope with the new legislation in France, please contact Accerio for additional information.

German Battery Changes

There are some new procedures for the management of end-of-life batteries in Germany, following changes to the German Battery law.

The Stiftung EAR has now taken over the role as the responsible organization for battery registrations from the UBA. There is a grace period until 01.01.2022 for transfer of current registrations, provided that the battery information at the UBA was up to date at year-end 2020. If your German battery registration is managed by Accerio, we have ensured all details were up to date by the end of 2020.

Main changes to the system include:

  • The collection target for portable batteries increased from 45 to 50%.
  • Collection systems for portable batteries will require approval by the Stiftung EAR.
  • Fees for portable batteries will be structured to provide an incentive to Producers to minimize the use of hazardous substances.
  • From now on firms that do not have a local German entity can appoint an authorized representative. However it is important to note that this is not a mandatory requirement.

The information requirements for producers to provide to customers have become more extensive. End users of batteries will need to be informed about measures to reduce waste and pollution of the environment from spent batteries, the options they have to prepare batteries for re-use, and the potential risks associated with lithium batteries.

Producers of industrial and automotive batteries need to publish the recycling rates they achieved last year on their website before the 31st of May. Furthermore, the German Environment Agency has now the right to request take-back documentation approved by an independent auditor/expert.

If you have any questions about your Producer obligations for batteries in Germany, please contact Accerio for support.

New EPR Legislation in South Africa

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South Africa will begin enforcement of a comprehensive Extended Producer Responsibility law for electronic waste, packaging, and batteries on May 1, 2021, although existing producers will be granted six additional months to move into compliance. After this point, EPR schemes will be regulated and subject to approval by the Environmental Department. Critically, the law stipulates that both foreign and domestic entities will be obligated as producers.

Additional facets of the law include:

  • Participation in a Product Responsibility Organization (PRO) or individual compliance, a change from the previous voluntary system.
  • Scope of EEE categorized under three classes of products: large, medium, and small equipment.
  • Obligations for integrated batteries.
  • Registration with the national authority for most consumer products in the above categories
  • Mandatory take-back and labeling
  • Reporting concerning the above actions and the amounts of product placed on the market.
  • Separate provisions for lighting products, with specific collection criteria and product scope; carrying different requirements than most EEE.

With respect to packaging obligations, the new law introduces EPR for all packaging types and materials, as well as for certain single-use products, following the EU Packaging Directive’s scope.

In terms of WEEE, violations of the Law can be punished by imprisonment, significant fines, or both. Doubtless the de facto requirements of the law will shift with its implementation and subsequent legislation which can be expected in November of 2021.

February 2021 Newsletter Read More »

February 2019 Newsletter

Newsletter: February 2019

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

German Scope Updates

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At the beginning of the year the German WEEE authority announced that “passive” devices (devices that only transmit currents or signals) will be in scope as of the 1st of May and thus need to be registered  This development brings Germany into line with what is already common practice in many other European countries.

Here are some examples of passive devices: 

Passive devices are to be categorized in either category 4 (large devices), category 5 (small devices) or category 6 (small ICT devices).

Passive devices vs. components

To differentiate between Passive Devices and Components, the new rule is of relevance to end-equipment designed for operation with a maximum alternating voltage (AC) of 1,000 volts or a maximum direct voltage (DC) of 1,500 volts. Components, such as cable by the metre, ferrules or ring cable lugs, remain out of scope.

If you are a manufacturer of passive devices, you should check the following:

Do you already have a registration for the corresponding device type and brand?

Yes, I have the required registrations No, I am not registered in the required categories
From May onwards, we can simply add the quantities of your passive devices in the corresponding device type to your regular reporting. Please get in touch with us so that we can arrange for a respective registration. As the approval procedure by the respective Authority can take up to 12 weeks it would be preferable to apply for registration in February.

If you need any help within this process, please contact your Accerio Account Manager who will be happy to assist you.

2018 in Review

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2018 was a big year in the WEEE/e-waste, batteries and packaging compliance world, with some significant changes and developments.

  • The European Union underwent a significant change with the advent of new reporting categories, called Open Scope, to expand and facilitate improvement of recycling and reporting of electronic waste. The previous system used 10 categories and the new system has 6 categories for reporting and more products are now expected to be reported.
  • The German reporting structure underwent some big changes with the new packaging law and associated authority launching, plus bringing new products into scope (see passive instruments article for reference).
  • Poland launched the new BDO environment authority superseding the previous GIOS organization and expressed intent to increase enforcement activities. 
  • Portugal experienced significant changes in the reporting systems and procedures. Additionally the Portuguese Environmental Agency became more active in enforcing correct implementation of Authorized Representative requirements and notifying distance sellers of packaging obligations.
  • 2018 saw an increase in compliance enforcement activities across the EU, especially in Ireland and Germany, with a greater and more aggressive focus on the full range of compliance requirements that occur after registration.
  • The advent of the European WEEE Enforcement Network (EWEN) which co-ordinates environmental authorities across the EU started in late 2017 and stepped up their strategy and efforts to crack down on free-riders in 2018, especially the growing area of online sales of electronics.

The changes in 2018 demonstrate that ongoing monitoring of the ever changing EU WEEE, batteries and packaging compliance landscape is imperative to ensuring full and correct compliance with stricter enforcement expected in 2019, and Accerio as your compliance partner is here to ensure you are covered.

E-Waste Compliance in Canada

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In Canada, E-Waste laws are in place in all 10 provinces and in 2 out of 3 territories (with Nunavut the exception). Provincial and territorial governments regulate Extended Producer Responsibility programs through local law. Some governments began targeting e-waste management about 20 years ago, while others came into effect as recently as 2017.

 Canada requires producers to participate in an approved stewardship program and to pay the appropriate environmental handling fee (EHF) for each regulated product sold into a province or territory. While the country continues to move toward standardization of product categories, each province and territory maintains their own laws and individual list of products that are considered to be in scope of e-waste.

 EPR laws focus e-waste stewardship responsibility on a variety of players, including manufacturers, brand owners, importers and retailers. It can be difficult for companies that sell into Canada to know what their EPR requirements are, whether the products they sell are ‘regulated’ and into which province or territory they are considered to be regulated. In addition, regulated product lists continue to evolve, making it necessary to review obligation status on an ongoing basis. There are also battery and packaging laws in place which look at producer responsibility differently from e-waste, which adds to the complexity of meeting compliance requirements.

 If your products are sold into Canada and you would like to understand whether you have any obligations as a steward, you can simply contact Accerio for an obligation assessment. Our country experts keep track of this ever changing landscape and are available to help simplify compliance in Canada and help you fulfill your legal obligations. 

February 2019 Newsletter Read More »

November 2018 Newsletter

Newsletter: November 2018

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

WEEE, Batteries and Packaging Year-End Reporting

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Now that we are well into Quarter 4, the end-of-year reporting will soon be upon us!  At Accerio we try to make reporting as streamlined and low-stress as possible for you, especially given that for many companies it means collating a lot of data under tight deadlines at a busy time of the year.  

Those accustomed to reporting monthly or quarterly will be more practiced, however for those who send data only in January here are a few steps and reminders to help make it run as smoothly as possible. 

  1. To avoid a scramble in January when the deadline is imminent, please let us know as soon as possible if there have been any product changes in your inventory since the last reporting period, including new products, or changes to existing ones.

     

  2. If you have changed reporting staff over the last year, please let us know so we ensure we send the data request email to the correct person, and to help anyone unfamiliar with what is needed prepare for January reporting

     

  3. The new Open Scope categories are now operational (> and < 50cm dimensions) across much of the EU.  If you haven’t already provided dimensions of your products please update us with the details as soon as possible, as they will be required for January reporting.

  4. Many countries will require a report of any take-back or recycling you have done. Often this will be managed by a scheme on your behalf, but we will need to know if you have done any directly, especially for professional WEEE or industrial batteries. Please ensure you are aware of how to get this data.

  5. Please make authorized signatories aware that some yearly reports will require their signature to finalize reporting, given this is an extra demand on their time in January and February. We will send reports for signature as soon as they are available.

If you would like us to check through your data before the end of the year to ensure that January is as stress-free as possible, please feel free to contact your account manager.

Austria

Household and professional WEEE, Portable batteries, Packaging

Belgium

Industrial and portable batteries, Packaging

Canada – British Columbia

Professional WEEE

Canada – Manitoba

Professional WEEE

Canada – New Brunswick

Professional WEEE

Canada – NF and Labrador

Professional WEEE

Canada – Nova Scotia

Professional WEEE

Canada – P. Edward Island

Professional WEEE

Canada – Saskatchewan

Professional WEEE

Denmark

Household and professional WEEE, Industrial and portable batteries

Finland

Professional WEEE, Industrial batteries

France

Professional WEEE, Industrial and portable batteries, Packaging

Germany

Professional WEEE, Portable batteries, Packaging

Hungary

Professional WEEE, Industrial and portable batteries, Packaging

Italy

Household and professional WEEE, Industrial and portable batteries

Luxembourg

Household and professional WEEE, Industrial and portable batteries

Netherlands

Household and professional WEEE, Industrial and portable batteries

Poland

Professional WEEE, Industrial and portable batteries

Portugal

Household and professional WEEE, Industrial and portable batteries

Spain

Packaging

Sweden

Household and professional WEEE, Industrial and portable batteries

Switzerland

Portable batteries

Turkey

Household WEEE

United Kingdom

Household and professional WEEE, Industrial and portable batteries, Packaging

USA – California

Professional WEEE

USA – District of Columbia

Household WEEE

USA – Illinois

Household WEEE

USA – Maine

Household WEEE, Portable batteries

USA – Oregon

Household WEEE

USA – South Carolina

Household WEEE

USA – Wisconsin

Household WEEE

Irish Compliance Enforcement

Recently the Irish Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) issued correspondence regarding enforcement of obligations to comply with WEEE and Batteries regulations in their entirety.  The communication emphasizes the importance of compliance not only with the basic registration and reporting obligations, but also with the additional requirements that some companies may not be aware exist.  Please see communication here. The Irish EPA has put in place measures to issue fixed payment notices (FPN) to businesses not complying with their all of their obligations under the Waste Electrical & Electronic Equipment (WEEE) Regulations and the Batteries Regulations.  These FPNS will be issued for specific offences and range between 500 to 2,000 per offence. You could incur these fines even if you are properly registered and complying with reporting requirements in Ireland but fail to meet all of the other Producer obligations. These additional requirements may include:
  • Placing WEEE or battery registration number on invoices and other business documents
  • Informing customers about their recycling options
  • Displaying statutory notices
  • Providing country specific information on website or product literature
  • Adherence to trans-frontier waste shipment legislation
  • Additional Retailer and Distributor obligations
  • Other country specific WEEE and battery compliance requirements
As WEEE laws mature across the European Union, the emphasis on full compliance beyond the basics is becoming a focus, and other countries are following the Irish example of looking more closely at compliance with all obligations. If you should have any questions regarding these additional requirements and would like to check to see if you are fully compliant with all obligations, please do not hesitate to contact your Accerio Account Manager with any questions. We are fully knowledgeable on all country specifics and are happy to assist.

Germany's New Packaging Law

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Did you know that Germany has a new Packaging Act that will come into force January 1, 2019?  If you fall into the category of those who need to comply, you need to act now to have your registration in place by the end of year. This will ensure you are properly compliant for when the new law becomes active.

The New German National Packaging Authority, (the Verpackungsregister), has made a great effort to make the process of registering and reporting as simple as possible, and it is free to register. However, it is still an involved exercise taking time to go through all the required steps. 

Details of the requirements include:

  • All local companies placing packaged products on the market have an obligation to comply.
  • There are scenario-specific obligations for some foreign companies selling products with packaging into Germany.
  • Online sales from outside Germany to private consumers in Germany will incur packaging obligations.
  • There are no minimal amount exclusions for small producers.
  • The strongest provisions apply to sales and grouped packaging to private households.
  • Sales to business end-users do not require registration, but free take-back of packaging must be provided.
  • All packaged goods are in scope – not just packaging for electronics and batteries.

The system of registering and reporting employs the Polluter Pays Principle, thereby ensuring all those placing packaging on the market in Germany support the costs of processing waste packaging. This makes for a fairer market by making it more difficult for free riders to dodge the system.

Significant penalties for non-compliant actors include fines of up to €200,000 and bans on selling any product in Germany!  A public register will publish a list of fully compliant companies, which acknowledges the companies doing the right thing by the law and the environment.

The good news is that Accerio can help assess your obligations and guide you through the process, so please contact us and we will be happy to ensure you are fully compliant in time for the deadline. If you would like to learn more, you can start by watching this video about the process.

USA e-waste and Battery Compliance

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Is there any e-waste or battery legislation in place in the USA?

The USA has active e-waste and battery compliance regulations in place in 26 of the 50 States of the Union.  The approach is quite different to that of the European Union, and it’s not uncommon for companies to be organized with their EU WEEE and battery compliance and unaware that they also may have requirements in the USA.

Who is responsible for complying?

The e-waste laws vary by state, are product focused, and consider what kind of entity the product was sold to as well as where the customer is located when determining compliance obligations. Who has the responsibility to comply is dictated by who manufactured the product, rather than the selling model. Some states only obligate products sold into that state, although there is a trend emerging in changing that to assessing national sales, and in some cases even global sales are considered.

Is all electronic waste in scope?

The type of e-waste in scope varies significantly from one state to the next, although there is a core focus on computers, monitors and associated peripheral products.  Obligated battery chemistry varies quite a bit from one state to the next.

What happens if I don’t comply?

States are active in monitoring waste streams to detect products that are not registered for sale, and publish ‘good’ lists of companies registered and ‘bad’ lists of those who are not, and will ban sales of non-registered products.  Litigation exposure and fines for non-compliance are expensive, and increasingly states are losing patience with non-compliers and are tightening up practices.

The e-waste and battery compliance environment in the USA is constantly evolving. Over time it is expected that the scope for product and battery chemistries will expand, and that categories of sales will increase to include some of those previously exempted.  If you are unsure if your product qualifies for compliance in the USA please contact us today for an assessment, and avoid ending up on the bad do-not-sell list!

November 2018 Newsletter Read More »

August 2018 Newsletter

Newsletter: August 2018

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

Open Scope Implementation

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 What Is Changing?

From 15th August 2018, the EU legislation on how EEE is categorized and reported throughout the EU changes. The current 10 categories used to define EEE products will be replaced by 6 new categories, three of which are dependent on the dimensions of products.

With the addition of size into some categories, some countries are also taking the opportunity to rearrange their definitions of household and professional EEE, with many items under 50cm automatically being categorized as household.

The legislation is also moving to an Open Scope means of classifying EEE, meaning that anything not specifically listed in the exclusions will now automatically be considered EEE. This may mean that some of your products will now be in scope whereas in the past they were not. Again, this does change from country to country, especially with regard to clothing or furniture that includes electronics, and you may find your business reporting more items in one country that another.

When Is It Changing?

Some countries have already implemented these changes, and some are trying to avoid making any changes to producer registrations until 2019, but the majority of countries will need your data to fit into the new categories by the end of Quarter 3.

What Do I Need To Do?

The country requiring most work to implement the new changes is Germany. The German authorities are automatically recategorizing all products. If your product is recategorized wrongly, you will need a new registration put in place, and you will have to pay the accompanying registration fee. If your company is affected by this, Accerio will be in touch. For most countries, a quick chat with your account manager about the products you sell and their sizes should suffice. You will have to start including your product sizes in your data reports. See below for more information on how to measure your products.

What Are The New Categories?

The new general categories are below. Please note, each country may also implement their own subcategories.

Temperature exchange equipment is electrical and electronic equipment (“EEE”) with internal circuits where substances other than water – e.g. gas, oil, refrigerant or a secondary fluid – are used for the purpose of cooling and/or heating and/or dehumidifying.

Examples: Refrigerators, Freezers, Equipment which automatically deliver cold products, Air-conditioning equipment, Dehumidifying equipment, Heat pumps, Radiators containing oil and other temperature exchange equipment using fluids other than water for the temperature exchange.

Not Included: Ventilation equipment (e.g. fan, hot-air blower, fan coils etc.), infrared equipment, or water radiators, and in general all equipment using water without additives or refrigerants for the temperature exchange.

Screens and monitors are EEE intended to provide images and information on an electronic display such as cathode ray tubes (CRT), liquid crystal displays (LCD), light‐emitting diode (LED) displays or other kind of electronic displays. Additionally Open Scope includes under category 2 other equipment containing screens having a surface greater than 100 cm2.

However, not all equipment containing a screen greater than 100 cm2 falls under category 2. Only EEE with a screen-surface greater than 100 cm2 and whose intended usage focus is displaying images or information on a screen is allocated to category 2.

Equipment such as Laptops, Notebooks, Tablets, eBook-/e-Readers with a screen surface greater than 100 cm2 shall be considered under category 2, but not equipment like washing machines, refrigerators, printers, mobile phones (smartphones, phablets etc.), even if they have a screen surface greater than 100 cm2, because their intended usage focus is not displaying information on a screen.

Examples: Screens, Televisions, LCD photo frames, Monitors, Laptops, Notebooks, Tablets, eBook-/e-Readers

Not Included:
a) All small IT equipment, such as mobile phones (smartphones, phablets etc.), GPSand navigation equipment, pocket calculators, telephones etc. (such EEE is allocated to category 6).
b) EEE that may contain screens with surfaces greater than 100 cm2, such as some refrigerators, automated teller machines, body care equipment, industrial machinery, medical devices, printers, photocopier etc.

Lamps in every size are “equipment for the generation of light”, which means electrical light sources (including LED lamps but not LED luminaires) which can be installed or exchanged by the end‐user in specific electric and electronic devices such as luminaires, projectors, solariums etc.

Examples: Straight fluorescent lamps, Compact fluorescent lamps, Fluorescent lamps, High intensity discharge lamps ‐ including pressure sodium lamps and metal halide lamps, Low pressure sodium lamps, LED lamps.

Not Included:
Luminaires: an apparatus which distributes, filters or transforms the light transmitted from one or more lamps and which includes all the parts necessary for supporting, fixing and protecting the lamps and, where necessary, circuit auxiliaries together with the means for connecting them to the electric supply. The words “luminaire” and “lamp” are often mixed up.
Luminaires are allocated to category 4 or 5. Luminaires with fixed lamps (that cannot be removed without damaging the unit) are also considered as luminaires.

EEE that is not allocated to categories 1, 2 or 3. Any external dimension is more than 50 cm.
The external dimensions of the equipment needs to be measured in a status ready for use. For correct measurement of EEE see here.

Examples: Washing machines, Clothes dryers, Dish washing machines, Cookers, Electric stoves, Electric hot plates, Luminaires, Equipment reproducing sound or images, Musical equipment (excluding pipe organs installed in churches), Appliances for knitting and weaving, Large computer‐mainframes, Large printing machines, Copying equipment, Large coin slot machines, Large medical devices, Large monitoring and control instruments, Large appliances which automatically deliver products and money, Photovoltaic panels. Household appliances; IT and telecommunication equipment; consumer equipment; luminaires; equipment reproducing sound or images, musical equipment; electrical and electronic tools; toys, leisure and sports equipment; medical devices; monitoring and control instruments; automatic dispensers; equipment for the generation of electric currents.
This category does not include equipment included in categories 1 to 3.

Not Included: Refrigerated vending machines (category 1), large screens (category 2), large lamps (long fluorescent tubes) (category 3) etc.

EEE that is not allocated to categories 1, 2, 3, 4 or 6. No external dimension is more than 50 cm.
The determination of dimensions follows the definition provided for category 4 above. If then the largest outer dimension is 50 cm or less and it’s not IT or telecommunication equipment it meets the definition of category 5.

Examples: Vacuum cleaners, Carpet sweepers, Appliances for sewing, Luminaires, Microwaves, Ventilation equipment, Irons, Toasters, Electric knives, Electric kettles, Clocks and Watches, Electric shavers, Scales, Appliances for hair and body care, Radio sets, Digital cameras, Video cameras, Video recorders, Hi‐fi equipment, Musical instruments, Equipment reproducing sound or images, Electrical and electronic toys, Sports equipment, Computers for biking, diving, running, rowing, etc., Smoke detectors, Heating regulators, Thermostats, Small Electrical and electronic tools, Small medical devices, Small Monitoring and control instruments, Small Appliances which automatically deliver products, Small equipment with integrated photovoltaic panels. Household appliances; consumer equipment; luminaires; equipment reproducing sound or images, musical equipment; electrical and electronic tools; toys, leisure and sports equipment; medical devices; monitoring and control instruments; automatic dispensers; equipment for the generation of electric currents.
This category does not include equipment included in categories 1 to 3 and 6.

Not Included: Small IT equipment with external dimension less than 50 cm (mobile phones (e.g., smartphones, phablets etc.), routers, printers, GPS and navigation equipment etc.) is allocated to category 6.

EEE that is not allocated to categories 1, 2, 3, 4 or 5.
Information equipment is equipment that can be used for collecting, transmitting, processing, storing and showing information. Telecommunication equipment is equipment designed to transmit signals – voice, video and data – electronically over a certain distance.
The determination of dimensions is the same as for category 5. If then the equipment is IT or telecommunication equipment it meets the definition of category 6.

Examples: Mobile phones (smartphones, phablets etc.), GPS and navigation equipment, Pocket calculators, Routers, Personal computers, Printers, Telephones.

Not Included: Small equipment that is not IT and telecommunication equipment (e.g. mp3 players etc.), large IT equipment (large printers) and IT equipment with screens greater than 100 cm2 (laptops, tablets, eBook-/e-Readers etc.) that are in category 2.

Dimensions

If you do not already have the dimensions of your products, you will have to measure them. Please note the following guidelines:

  • You can see some examples of how to measure different items here.
  • As a general rule, the external dimensions of an EEE shall be measured in a status ready for use but without parts and accessories such as hoses, tubes and cables. Power cables, fixed or detachable, are also not measured with the EEE. If the EEE has fixed retractile or foldable parts (e.g. antennas or articulated arms) it shall be wrapped in its most compact form in order to minimize the impact on the measurement. For example, a household water kettle with long flexible cable can be categorized at smaller than 50cm even if the flexible power cable would be 100 cm long when extended.
  • In case of rectangular equipment the largest height, width or depth of the EEE is relevant.
  • Screens and monitors are measured by total surface area. If their total surface area is less than 100cm, they will not be classified as screens and we will therefore need their largest height, width or depth as above.
  • For round equipment the largest diameter is applicable.

UK Fee Change

bank

Along with the advent of great changes in the United Kingdom with Brexit, in 2019 the fees for Producer Compliance Schemes in the UK will also change.  

The new pricing is advantageous to non-UK Producers distance selling into the United Kingdom, with the exception of non-UK based large producers who do not have VAT registration seeing a steep rise .  For UK based producers however there is a something of a financial sting with significant fee increases from the current rates.

You can check your status here to see how your organization will be affected:

Client Status 2018 Fee 2019 Fee
(a) Small producer* £30 £30
(b) Large** UK based producer who is not VAT registered £30 £100
(c) Large** overseas based producer who is not VAT registered £30 £100
(d) Producers with £1 million turnover or less and required to be VAT registered £210 Category now divided into (f) or (g)
(e) Producers with more than £1 million turnover £445 Category now divided into (f) or (g)
(f) Large** overseas based producer who is VAT registered New category; most likely previously in category (d) or (e) £375
(g) Large** UK based producer who is VAT registered New category; most likely previously in category (d) or (e) £750

*A small producer is a manufacturer who places less than 5 tonnes of EEE on the UK market annually.
**A large producer is a manufacturer who places more than 5 tonnes of EEE on the UK market annually

Source: UK Environment Agency

German Battery Act

batteries
An important Extended Producer Responsibility update is coming for batteries in Germany, with the German Federal Environment Ministry to publish a new draft law in the coming months.

Who Is Likely To Be Taking Charge?

The changes are expected to include the introduction of a new national authority, which is likely to be an extension of the Stiftung EAR’s current mandate to manage WEEE in Germany. This new battery authority will operate in a similar way to the WEEE National Authority management, including managing tasks such as the registration of producers and the collection of put-on-market (POM) data, and take-back volume specifications.  The full range of tasks will become available once the new law has been formally announced.

What Is Likely To Change?

The role of GRS Batterien Foundation is expected to change completely. Currently, GRS is operating the largest common collection scheme for portable batteries in Germany for most producers. However, in the future they will operate in a more general capacity by focussing on running awareness and informational campaigns, and undertaking research and development. Membership with GRS will no longer be an option. Consequently, producers will have to comply through other take-back systems. Accerio will explore these options for you.

What Are The Implications?

A positive outcome for stakeholders will be a partial alignment of the Batteries Act with the WEEE Act, and the commensurate advantages of both to be managed by the one National Authority providing the convenience of doing everything with one authority as opposed the inherent complication of dealing with multiple organizations. The down side will be an anticipated increase in battery recycling fees due to the additional administrative layers and overall complexity of the proposed system.

What Happens Next?

For now it’s business-as-usual. Accerio will closely monitor the market situation and will let you know once action is required.

India Enforcement

CPCB India Logo

What Is Happening?

For companies selling EEE in India, there have been some big changes triggered by the amended E-Waste Rules of 2016 that might affect operations, with far stricter enforcement of the laws, and significant stings for companies caught out not complying. Recently the Indian government has shifted the responsibilities for WEEE compliance from a State run system into a centralized management approach, operated by the Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB), and have increased enforcement in a big way. 

What Might Happen To My Imports?

Non-compliant imports may be subject to being held up in customs until the producer is correctly registered.  To complicate things further, getting hold of someone in the government office to answer questions or to help process applications is not easy, and having a contact who knows the system and can arrange things on your behalf makes a very big difference in time and money.

How Does WEEE and E-Waste Work In India?

The Indian EPR framework has a few unique features. All stakeholders in the supply chain from start to finish must apply for authorization. Producers and manufacturers both have WEEE obligations, the latter because so much manufacturing occurs in India that under the same E-Waste law producers who are manufacturing in India are also held responsible for the environmental impact of the waste and by-products created during production. What products are considered in scope varies from the European model, and parts used for refurbishment and repair are included.  There are specific requirements for reporting and marking products, with sales backdated as part of the requirement. 

Can I Become Registered in India?

As part of the more stringent adherence to the laws the CPCB has a published list of companies who have properly registered.  If you suspect you may have WEEE Obligations in India and would like to be on that list, or if you need to get a shipment released that is currently stuck in Indian Customs, please contact Accerio, we are here to help!

August 2018 Newsletter Read More »

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