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Government must aim to meet battery recycling targets, says European Battery Recycling Association

The European Battery Recycling Association, an association of battery recycling companies, has urged the UK Government to intensify its efforts to meet the 25 per cent battery recycling target by 2012 and other Member States which have recently implemented the 2006 Battery Directive.


The Battery Directive was implemented into UK legislation on 5 May 2009.


EBRA secretary general Emmanuel Beaurepaire said the UK Government would need to put pressure on compliance schemes to form a national battery recycling publicity campaign and to produce battery recycling collection points to make it easy for the public to drop batteries off for recycling.


Under the Battery Regulations, battery compliance schemes will have to collect, treat and recycle batteries on behalf of large producers. The Environment Agency is currently selecting which battery compliance schemes to approve.


He added: The authorities will need to put pressure on organisations or compliance schemes to reach their market share for collection or face penalties.


The UK is currently recycling five per cent of its batteries and will need to get to 25 per cent by 2012.


Beaurepaire said it was possible that the UK can reach this target but said it was more likely that in two years the UK will achieve between 10 to 15 per cent. He also said that the UK Government had to start planning to reach the second target of 45 per cent by 2016.


A total of seven Member States have reached the first Directive target of 25 per cent for 2012 Austria, Belgium, France, Germany, Luxemburg, Sweden and the Netherlands. Luxemburg has the highest rate with 60 per cent and Belgium has the second highest rate with 41.5 per cent.

The EBRA state that six other countries have a definite chance of reaching the target on time: Denmark, Portugal, Greece, Ireland, Spain and Latvia. It also states that Finland (one per cent) and Italy (one per cent) will find it difficult to reach the targets.


According to the EBRA, 27,600 tonnes of used portable batteries from 27 European Union Member States have been processed in 2008 by EBRA members.


Table showing EU Member States battery collection rates

Rankings

EU Countries

Portable batteries processed by EBRA members

EBRA ratio

1

Luxemburg

120t

60 per cent

2

Belgium

1939t

41.5 per cent

3

Austria

1349t

38 per cent

4

Netherlands

2377t

37 per cent

5

Sweden

559t

28 per cent

6

Germany

9398t

28.5 per cent

14             

UK

1422t

5 per cent

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