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BIS responsibilities for WEEE & Batteries transfer to Defra

29th March 2016

Melanie Harper

It was last week announced (24 March) that the Environmental Regulation team will transfer from the Department for Business, Innovation & Skills (BIS) to the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra).

This change will be effective from 1 April 2016. A written ministerial statement which details the change was published alongside the announcement.

WEEE & Batteries

The Environmental Regulation team are responsible for a range of waste related regulations including the Waste Electrical and Electronic Equipment (WEEE) Regulations and the Waste Batteries and Accumulators Regulations.

As detailed in the official announcement, the current responsibilities of the Environmental Regulation team include:

  • Upholding the UK's domestic WEEE system including running the distributor takeback scheme (DTS)
  • Regulating producers (vehicle manufacturers and importers) and Authorised Treatment Facilities for the UK's end of life vehicles (ELV) system
  • Policy development and monitoring for the Restriction of Hazardous Substances in electrical and electronic equipment (RoHS)
  • Policy development for the substance restrictions (Essential Requirements) related to packaging
  • The placing on the market for all batteries and accumulators and the waste disposal regime for automotive and industrial batteries

The team also has policy responsibility for the enforcement of these regulations through contracts held with the Environment Agency, the National Measurement and Regulation Office (NMRO) and trading standards departments in local authorities.

It was stated in the official announcement of the move on the .gov website that, as much of the legislation and related work is split between two departments currently, transferring the team and resource from BIS to Defra will 'enable and ensure greater coordination of government policy and the combined regulatory responsibilities.'

If you have any questions regarding the move, or would like to discuss the WEEE or Batteries regulations, please do not hesitate to contact one of our experts.


Are you obligated for Weee Compliance?

If you manufacture, import, rebrand or sell electrical equipment direct to end users in the UK from overseas, then it is likely that you will be obligated for WEEE compliance. Click here to find out more and take our simple WEEE Compliance assessment.

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