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New reuse standard for electronic equipment launches to help reduce illegal WEEE exports

A new standard to ensure electrical items for reuse are fit for purpose, which is expected to help reduce illegal exports of e-waste, has been launched today (18 April)by the British Standards Institute (BSI).

The PAS141 was commissioned by the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills, to develop the first specification for WEEE in the European Union, setting out how organisations manage the process of preparing used electrical and electronic equipment and WEEE. It will ensure that each piece of reused electrical and electronic equipment is inspected and tested according to requirements, helping regulatory bodies like the Environment Agency identify which exports of electronic equipment are genuinely going for reuse and which are illegal waste exports.

In addition, reuse organisations will be expected to track each piece of equipment through the ‘preparing for reuse’ process, keeping records of all tests performed, particularly for equipment exported from the UK.

It is hoped the standard will provide consumers, who may previously have felt uneasy about buying electronic equipment sent for reuse, will now have confidence knowing the equipment meets specific standards.

BSI Standards director Mike Low said: “As the need to protect our environment increases, PAS141 will help make this possible by ensuring the reuse of electrical and electronic equipment is safe and functional. The need for PAS141 has been demonstrated by the significant interest and support it has received from industry and Government departments in the UK as well as the attention it had gained from other Governments and worldwide organisations.”

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