WEEE Scrap Prices in the UK, Today
Updated 29th July, 2021
WEEE Scrap Prices (per ton/tonne)*
Mixed Quality PCB’s – Valuation
Memory Cards (Gold Edged) – £300
Low Grade PCB’s (CRT, Stereo, etc) – £300
Hard Disk Drives (Complete) – £700
DVD/Floppy/CD Drives – £250
Power Supply Units – £300
Engine Control Units – £300
Base Units (Complete) – £300
WEEE Recycling Guide
WEEE Recycling has become an increasingly vital part of the waste and recycling industry. Read our guide to everything you need to know about WEEE recycling.
What is WEEE?
WEEE stands for Waste Electric and Electronic Equipment, applying to all end of life electronic or electrical equipment, WEEE is divided into 2 categories non-household and household WEEE.
About WEEE regulations
As part of a European Union initiative the WEEE directive (Waste Electric and Electronic Equipment Directive) became law in 2003, making it a requirement for businesses who distribute or manufacture electronic or electrical equipment accountable for its disposal.
The adoption of WEEE regulations was introduced in the UK in 2006, since then its been amended by new legislation in 2013. This legislation established the requirements for the recovery, recycling, reuse and treatment of WEEE.
Prior to introduction of the WEE directive in the UK, waste electronic and electrical products were gathered as part of household waste, however since 2006 the recycling of WEEE has been a fast growing sub-sector, increasing in economical value to the economy.
Waste electrical items can have a harmful effect on the environment as well as animal and human health. The directive aims to ultimately reduce the impact of WEEE waste landing up in landfill by minimising waste, encouraging recycling and adding an incentive to produce more environmentally friendly products.
The law makes it clear that the producers of electronic and electrical equipment are financially responsible for the environmental impact of goods they place on the market, especially when WEEE products are classed as waste.
Effectively, all producers are therefore required to manage the collection, treatment and recycling of WEEE. To facilitate this, all producers are obliged to register with, or create, a registered compliance scheme.
Failure to follow these waste regulations can result in a fine of up to £5,000, as well as further prosecution.
WEEE recycling standards
There are ten categories outlined in the current version of WEEE legislation. These are:
- Larger household appliances (e.g. fridges, cookers, washing machines)
- Smaller appliances (e.g. vacuum cleaners, irons, toasters)
- IT equipment (e.g. computers, printers, scanners)
- Consumer equipment (e.g. radios, TVs, camcorders)
- Lighting (e.g. lamps, fluorescent tubes)
- Electrical tools (e.g. drills, sewing machines, saws)
- Toys and leisure (e.g. gaming consoles, battery-powered toys, exercise machines)
- Medical devices (e.g. dialysis machines, analysers, medical freezers)
- Monitoring and control equipment (e.g. smoke detectors, thermostats)
- Automatic dispensers (e.g. drink, food and cash dispensers)
However, it is expected that these categories will be expanded at some point in 2019.
How does WEEE recycling work?
Legally obliged to handle their waste in accordance with WEEE regulations, businesses have what is deemed a “duty of care” relating to how WEEE they produce is stored, moved and disposed of. This responsibility applies from creating the electronic or electrical product, through to the time when its recovered, destroyed or recycled.
Often WEEE products are complex and difficult to recycle, different treatments are used for WEEE products in the recycling process, this varies depending upon the technology used and the category of the WEEE product. Its common for waste electrical or electronic products to contain hazardous materials, such as cadmium, lead, mercury and arsenic as some examples.
To tackle this issue, its required by law that businesses are directly responsible for recycling WEEE, you must be licensed and experienced to deal with these materials. Scrap metal businesses require a waste carriers license, for WEEE recycling, disposal and treatment the recycling facility must be an Authorised Treatment Facility(AATF).
WEEE collection and disposal
It is worth noting that nothing about WEEE regulations imply a company (or obligated producer) must physically dispose of electrical waste themselves. Usually, such arrangements are made during the process of signing up for a registered compliance scheme.
The majority of companies fulfil their obligations by arrangement with a licensed AATF, they in turn manage all aspects of the WEEE recycling process.
In short, WEEE regulations ensure that businesses must minimise the environmental impact of electrical and electronic equipment they produce. The UK disposes of over 1 million tonnes of WEEE equipment per year, these products must be either repaired or recycled, rather than risk polluting toxins into landfill sites. The WEEE Directive is responsible for massively improved recycling rates for electrical and electronic equipment.
As a licensed AATF, Reclamet is more than happy to support this vital industry.