The UK’s waste electrical and electronic equipment (WEEE) recycling sector collected 490,541 tonnes of household WEEE in 2021, meaning 97.4% of the target total was met.
The figures also show the tonnages of household WEEE collected by producer compliance schemes in 2021 grew by 7% from 2020, where just 92% of the target was reached.
Failure to meet targets means that some producer compliance schemes will be required to pay into a ‘compliance fee’ fund to fulfil their recycling obligations for the year. However, this figure will be considerably lower than recent years.
The publication of the data comes around a month after the announcement that the Joint Trade Association (JTA) would operate the WEEE compliance fee for the third year running.
That the targets were missed was not unexpected in an exceptional year. The various national lockdowns had a huge impact on the collection of WEEE across the country.
Three categories of household WEEE – medical devices, display equipment, and cooling appliances containing refrigerants – exceeded their individual targets.