‘E-waste’ can be described simply as any device that requires a plug or battery to operate (including batteries themselves), and includes:
- re-chargeable and non-rechargeable batteries, including lead-acid batteries used in vehicles or stationary power systems (excluding large batteries used in electric vehicles and energy storage applications); and
- categories of waste electrical and electronic equipment (WEEE) defined in Annex III and IV of European WEEE Directive 2012/19/EU.
In the WEEE Directive, electrical and electronic equipment (EEE) is defined as equipment which is dependent on electric currents or electromagnetic fields in order to work properly and equipment for the generation, transfer, and measurement of such currents and fields and designed for use with a voltage rating not exceeding 1 000 volts for alternating current and 1 500 volts for direct current. This definition extends to all EEE components, sub-assemblies, and consumables which are part of the product at the time of discarding e.g. printer cartridges.
Please note, the WEEE Directive currently exempts the following EEE arisings from extended producer responsibility requirements:
- arms, munitions, and war material intended for specifically military purposes
- equipment designed to be sent into space
- large-scale stationary industrial tools
- medical devices where such devices are expected to be infective before end of life, and active implantable medical device
See the Declaration of Priority Products Notice 2020 here: Corrigendum—Declaration of Priority Products Notice 2020 – 2020-go4533 – New Zealand Gazette