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"Work together" to make trading scheme work, Government tells WEEE PCSs

Work together the Government has told Producer Compliance Schemes (PCS), in the wake of industry disputes over collecting material under the Waste Electrical and Electronic Equipment (WEEE) Directive. The message came during a PCS update meeting with the Department for Business Enterprise and Regulatory Revision (BERR). Prior to this, high profile disagreements had persisted about PCSs collecting more recycling evidence than they were obligated to. Debate had centred on PCSs Repic and Electrolink, concerning motivations about why over-collections happened and how over collected evidence was traded (mrw.co.uk October 2 2007 and mrw.co.uk September 7 2007). However, the Government made it clear that it wants its evidence trading system, the Settlement Centre (SC), to work effectively, suggesting over-collection is not an issue. Commenting on the situation the Scottish Environment Protection Agency, which regulates Electrolink, said: The WEEE regulations do not directly put any limits on how much a scheme can or cannot collect. PCSs not able to meet their obligation will need to trade with those with excess evidence. A spokesman for the Environment Agency, which regulates Repic, added: The regulations say that all schemes must meet their members' obligations and require schemes to co-operate with each other, and include provision for exchanging evidence between those that have more than they need and those that have too little. BERR also said that enforcement agencies and Government will monitor the market and that it was in discussion with a number of PCSs to ensure that the system works, adding, The Government is committed to having an effective system. The SC, originally called the Exchange, will go live next month and recyclers will be able to enter data onto the online database. BERR said that transferring documentary evidence for all the recycling carried out under the WEEE regulations is the next step in the system. Under the WEEE system, when a PCS clears a Designated Collection Facility of collected appliances and takes them to an accredited recycler or exporter, an evidence note is issued. This must be put on the SCs online database by the recycler or exporter within 28 days. PCSs with a surplus or deficit of WEEE will be able to trade with each other, with both side notifying the SC and BERR when they trade evidence.

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