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Environment Agency leaves big names off WEEE 2010 approval list

Some big names have not made the waste electrical and electronic equipment producer compliance scheme approval list for 2010 from the Environment Agency and the Scottish Protection Agency.

Names such as Econo-Weee, Draeger Medical UK, and Transform (operated by Biffa) which received approval for 2009 are off the list for 2010. It is the second piece of bad news for Econo-Weee, after the schemes application to run a batteries compliance scheme, Econo-Batt, failed to win approval from the EA.

City Compliance is still on the list but is trading under Waste Electrical Recycling Compliance Scheme and has always operated under that name.

Producer compliance scheme WEEECare chief executive Peter Hunt told MRW: I feel sorry for those that have lost their livelihoods because the process looks like a lottery. They have been literally been told they cannot trade.

Members signed up to the schemes who were not approved for next year are now expected to sign up to other schemes.

Big names that did get approved on the WEEE producer compliance list for 2010 include Repic, Electrolink, Valpak, Budget Pack, Recolight and Veolia.

Electrolink chief operating officer Lynne Cullis said:
We are delighted that SEPA, has approved our Operational Business Plan, which enables us to continue operating a producer compliance scheme. We believe that our approval demonstrates the robustness and viability of our business model and we look forward to working with all local authorities, operators, schemes and producers to ensure the continuing success of the WEEE Regulations.

Repic chief executive Philip Morton told MRW: We have got a clearer landscape now because of recent events. The Environment Agency has been clear, very consistent and very robust and has asked schemes to do what they say on the tin.

We believe that the recent consistent proactive guidance issued to all the WEEE compliance schemes along with a more robust approach by the enforcement authorities was a major factor in the smooth running of this approval process.

When asked if there were too many WEEE schemes Morton said there were not too many schemes and that it was good to have competition to drive innovation.

Biffa environment and external affairs director David Savory said: This decision came as a complete surprise to us as we had received no warning that there were any problems or issues with our application, and we do not accept the decision of the Environment Agency or the grounds for refusal. We are now in discussion with the EA with a view to securing a resolution early this week.

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