The implementation of the waste electrical and electronic equipment (WEEE) directive is not expected to have a significant impact on disposal of pre-digital television sets, as these have been subject to the requirements of the Hazardous Waste Regulations since July 2005.
Digital switchover does not require disposal of any equipment, as an existing analogue television can normally be upgraded by adding a digital set-top box. However, as the Government's “Regulatory and Environmental Impact Assessment on the timing of digital switchover” (September 2005) acknowledges, there may be a temporary acceleration in the disposal of some secondary television sets that people choose not to adapt after switchover in each region. In light of this, the Department of Trade and Industry and the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs jointly commissioned the Market Transformation Programme to establish and quantify any changes in patterns of disposal of consumer equipment, including televisions, due to digital switchover. The results from this research should be available in early 2007.