Electrical waste recycling (WEEE)

Each year over one million tonnes of electronic and electrical waste (WEEE) is thrown away in the UKWEEE recycling

Electrical and electronic equipment makes up around 5% of Europe’s municipal waste and is growing 3 times faster than any other municipal waste stream.

Resources loss

When obsolete materials are not recycled, raw materials have to be processed to make new products.

In 2009 it is estimated that out of 12 million tonnes of WEEE waste arising in Europe the loss of resources was around

  • 4.8 million tonnes of ferrous metal
  • 2.4 million tonnes of plastic
  • 1,304,000 tonnes of copper
  • 672,000 tonnes of aluminium
  • 672,000 tonnes of glass

This in addition to the loss of heavy metals such as Lead, Mercury and more…

How is WEEE recycled?

Fridges and freezers

All compressor oils and refrigerant gases are removed and where possible recovered or incinerated. The compressor is then removed and recycled, the remaining fridge or freezer is then shredded capturing any CFCs. The metal, plastic are all separated and recycled.

Televisions

Are recycled by removing the outer casing, the unit then passes through a tube splitter which cuts off the end screen glass. This is a glass tube normally containing high levels of lead. Once decontaminated both the end screen glass and the tube glass are recycled. All circuit boards are also removed, broken down into plastics and metals and then recycled.

Other types of WEEE are processed by removing any plastics, metals and circuit boards, by shredding and separating in specialist groups.

Categories of WEEE

Household Appliances

Washing machines
Clothes Dryers
Cookers
Freezers
Clocks
Microwaves
Fans
Air conditioners
Vacuum cleaners
Shavers
Irons
Tooth brushes
Toasters
Hair dryers
Scales etc

IT and Telecom Equipment

Monitors
Computers
Centralised data processors
Laptops
Servers
Printers
Mobile phones
Notebook computers
Telephones
Answering machines etc

Consumer Goods

Video cameras
Televisions
Radios
Video recorders etc

Lighting Equipment

Luminaries for florescent tubes
Straight florescent tubes
Other lighting equipment etc

Electrical Tools

Soldering irons
Drills
Saws
Sprayers
Sewing machines
Riveting and nailing tools
Welders
Lawn mower and other gardening tools etc

Toys

Hand held video game
Coin slot machines
Video game consoles
Trains or car racing sets etc

Medical Equipment

X-ray equipment
Dialysis equipment
Cardiology equipment etc

Monitoring / Control

Smoke detectors
Measuring equipment
Weighing equipment
Thermostats etc

Dispensers

Hot drinks dispensers
Cold bottles or cans dispensers
Money dispensers
All appliances which deliver automatic products

footer-image
Menu
×