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Electronic Equipment: Recycling

Volume 462: debated on Monday 25 June 2007

To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs pursuant to the answer to the hon. Member for North Cornwall (Dan Rogerson) of 27 April 2007, Official Report, column 1342W, on electronic equipment: recycling, what mechanisms the Government hope will be established to provide for the expected increase in recycling of (a) metals, (b) plastics and (c) other materials. (142884)

I have been asked to reply.

The UK has existing treatment capacity for many types of Waste Electrical and Electronic Equipment (WEEE). For example, we have some of the largest and most modern fridge treatment facilities in Europe and are currently importing fridges from France and the Republic of Ireland. We have growing capacity for the treatment of TVs and monitors with cathode ray tubes (CRTs) and good treatment capacity for lamps and fluorescent tubes. The capacity in these areas has been prompted by the requirements of the Ozone Depleting Substances Regulations (in the case of fridges and freezers) and the Hazardous Waste Regulations in the case of other types of hazardous WEEE.

Since the WEEE UK Regulations were laid on 12 December 2006 this existing infrastructure has been further enhanced, with investments of over £15 million across the UK. This investment includes plants in South Wales, Bedfordshire, Kent and Birmingham which will be capable of handling in excess of an additional 250,000 tonnes of WEEE material.