The Waste Electrical and Electronic Equipment Directive (WEEE Directive) is the European Community directive 2002/96/EC on waste electrical and electronic equipment (WEEE) which, together with the RoHS * Directive 2002/95/EC, became European Law in February 2003, setting collection, recycling and recovery targets for all types of electrical goods.
The directive imposes the responsibility for the disposal of waste electrical and electronic equipment on the manufacturers of such equipment. Those companies should establish an infrastructure for collecting WEEE, in such a way that 'Users of electrical and electronic equipment from private households should have the possibility of returning WEEE at least free of charge'. Also, the companies are compelled to use the collected waste in an ecologically-friendly manner, either by ecological disposal or by reuse or refurbishment of the collected WEEE.
The WEEE Directive obliged the twenty-five EU member states to transpose its provisions into national law by 13 August 2004. Only Cyprus met this deadline. On 13 August 2005, one year after the deadline, all member states except for Malta and the UK had transposed at least framework regulations. As the national transposition of the WEEE Directive varies between the member states, a patchwork of requirements and compliance solutions is emerging across Europe.
* RoHS: Directive on the restriction of the use of certain hazardous substances in electrical and electronic equipment.