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Frustrating WEEE

By John McKenna

The Governments lack of progress in implementing the Waste Electrical Electronic Equipment (WEEE) Directive was obvious at a conference on that topic held in London this week.

Producers of WEEE are supposed to begin registering with the National Clearing House, an administrative body that will calculate how much they should pay according to market share, in January.

When asked whether it would be ready for January registration, Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (DEFRA) Producer Responsibility Unit policy advisor Daniel Kapadia said: I dont know. Ministers will need to look at the analysis of responses to the final consultation and then we will take it from there.

However, this seems increasingly unlikely given the current timescale. The WEEE Directive should have been written into UK law in August, and then been implemented in August 2005.

The law has yet to be written up, but despite this delay Kapadia said there had been no suggestion to him that the 2005 deadline would be missed.

Many of the issues concerning the implementation and practical working of the directive are still being worked out.

This was reflected in the presentations that, while emphasising differing approaches and concerns, were united in making their cases based on contingents.

A published analysis of responses to the final consultation and details about the permitting criteria will be made available to the public in the coming weeks.

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