When electrical and electronic goods come to the end of their lives, many of the components can be re-used or recycled. This saves energy and resources in the manufacture of new equipment, as well as reducing the amount going into landfill.
The Waste Electrical and Electronic Equipment Directive aims to minimise the impact of electrical and electronic goods on the environment by encouraging re-use and recycling. It seeks to achieve this by making producers responsible for financing the collection, treatment, and recovery of waste electrical equipment, and by obliging distributors to allow consumers to return their waste equipment free of charge.
The Directive does not just apply to new products. Producers are made responsible collectively for goods already on the market. Equipment can be taken back to stores or to facilities run by local authorities but funded by manufacturers.
Staffordshire County Council will accept electrical goods for recycling at household waste and recycling sites (e.g. St Albans Rd, Stafford). Items are sorted for reuse and recycling within the UK. See also Computers and IT.