International Association of Electronic Waste Producer Responsibility Organisations
Tackling the e-waste challenge
Tackling the e-waste challenge
In 2019 only 17,4% of global e-waste was collected and properly recycled, which means that 44,3 million metric tonnes of e-waste, valued at US $57 billion, was either placed in landfill, burned or illegally traded and treated in a sub-standard way, and this is despite 71% of the world’s population being covered by e-waste legislation.
International E-Waste Day has been developed by the WEEE Forum to help to address this huge issue and promote global e-waste recycling. 127 organisations from 51 countries across the world got involved in this year's International E-Waste Day by arranging their own activities to unite in tackling the e-waste challenge.
The last edition took place on 14 October 2020.
After nearly two decades since the creation of EU legislation on WEEE and despite huge effort and advancement, most Member States have not reached the WEEE collection targets.
The United Nations Institute for Training and Research highlights in its latest study the factors that impede formal/official collection and concludes that, in order to achieve the minimum collection rate, Member States have to divert a high proportion of WEEE that currently goes unreported. In its vision paper, based on UNITAR's report, the WEEE Forum lays out four vital steps that need to be taken to ensure the system is fair and achievable and conveys its vision for the future of Extended Producer Responsibility.
There are currently 43 members of the WEEE Forum. These members are not-for-profit WEEE producer responsibility organisations (or ‘producer compliance schemes’) mainly in Europe, but we have recently expanded globally and are now pleased to include members from six different continents.
Our members represent electrical and electronic equipment manufacturers covering the whole spectrum of production from small electronic devices, such as cellphones, through to large household appliances like refrigerators and other large items, for example photovoltaic panels.
Since their foundation, the producer responsibility organisations of the WEEE Forum have collected, de-polluted and recycled or sent for preparation for re-use 21.7 million tonnes of WEEE. 2.7 million tonnes of this was collected in 2019, which was almost two thirds of WEEE collected in Europe during that year.
In addition, our members operate over 114,000 WEEE collection points and two thirds of them are market leaders in their countries.
The WEEE Forum a.i.s.b.l. is an international association representing forty producer responsibility organisations across the globe. Together with our members, we are at the forefront of turning the extended producer responsibility principle into an effective electronic waste management policy approach through our combined knowledge of the technical, business and operational aspects of collection, logistics, de-pollution, processing, preparing for reuse and reporting of e-waste. Our mission is to be the world’s foremost e-waste competence centre excelling in the implementation of the circularity principle.
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