The Q3 Portable Battery collection data released last week (3rd December) demonstrates the UK's excellent progress towards the 2014 collection target and a decline in the use of lead acid batteries being used to meet it. The data shows that 3,303 tonnes was collected in the July – September period of 2014 making that a total of 10,853 tonnes of waste batteries collected so far this year. These figures mean that the UK is currently running at about 30%, well on its way to meeting the 2014 target of 35%.
Lead acid batteries
Despite some progress, lead acid batteries still make up 77% of tonnages collected by compliance schemes for recycling, however, the Q3 data release confirms that this percentage has declined since 2013 when the percentage was 86%. Confusion caused by the Environment Agency's definition of a portable battery has meant that the recycling of lead acid batteries has been used towards the UK's battery recycling target. Lead acid battery collections decline
Recyclers and producers are currently awaiting a consultation which will review and potentially alter the existing definition of portable waste batteries meaning that the recycling of lead acid batteries no longer contributes to the UK's recycling target. A date for the consultation is yet to be confirmed, however, letsrecycle.com have reported that a Defra spokeswoman last week stated that it is likely to begin ‘before the New Year or shortly after’.
BatteryBack Plc Batteries Compliance Scheme Operator General Manager, David Reynolds commented: "There is still no clarity on when the consultation that may change the definition of hand carry-able will start and be implemented. Several expected consultation dates have passed and the uncertainty is affecting plans to develop battery recycling facilities in the UK."
Comply Direct will keep you up to date with any further information regarding the consultation. For more information about Batteries compliance and recycling, please do not hesitate to get in touch.