Fabian Demicoli

Waste of Electrical and Electronic Equipment – The way ahead


GRTU and Green
MT have last Thursday held a joint session on the Waste of Electrical and
Electronic Equipment (WEEE) Directive at the GRTU premises for members that
would be affected by developments in this regard. GRTU's Deputy President
Philip Fenech welcomed those present and Joseph Attard CEO of Green MT gave a
comprehensive presentation.

The aim
of the meeting was to update producers on the current policy in respect to WEEE
arising out of the National Waste Management Plan final policy document
2014-2020. This policy document provides an outline of the current
recommendations made by Government in order to put in place the actual
implementation of the WEEE Directive in Malta.

Whilst
the policy document provides a number of changes and scenarios, the major stumbling
block continues to be the payment of eco-contribution. In addition the document
outlines the provision of a bank guarantee to cover the waste management of
EEE. Whilst some form of guarantee would be a requisite it is definitely a
stumbling block to outline that self-compliant 
producers or producers being part of a scheme need to provide a full
financial guarantee for managing this waste stream. In addition the document
does not address the anomaly of the last 6 years, where producers were paying
eco-contribution and taking no further action to collect or recover their
market placed EEE. It was furthermore noted that through the recast of the WEEE
Directive, producers present for the meeting were told that the increase in
collection and recovery is minimally now fourfold of what the Directives
stipulated in 2007. They were also told that the recovery needs to reach 65% of
market placement by 2021.

GRTU has
always insisted that a one size fits all approach to these Directives for all
Member States leaves much to be desired and as such Government should try to
offset these heavy requirements by using a lenient approach towards both
schemes or self-compliant producers.

Members
present were also told that there will be more monitoring and enforcement in
relation to this legislation. The producers present were advised that GRTU and
Green MT will be represented on the waste management stakeholders group being
set up by the Ministry for Sustainable Development, the Environmental and Climate
Change to monitor and implement this policy. In addition it was agreed that a
sartorial committee is set up to include representatives for GRTU, Green MT,
prospective producer members and WEEE treatment facility operators. This
sectorial committee would be responsible to take on discussions with Government
in relation to WEEE issues and finalize the way forward for the implementation
of this particular waste stream.

It was
concluded that more frequent meetings will start being held in this regard.

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