EU May Force Companies To Pay for E-Waste Collection

Stasbourg, France -- The European Union (EU) Parliament backed new rules Wednesday that would force companies to pay to collect and recycle electronic products.

The proposal also would set a 75 percent recycling target for household appliances and a 65 percent recycling target for personal computers (PCs), telephones and stereos; would ban the use of toxic substances such as lead, mercury and cadmium in electronic products; and would force manufacturers to collect used batteries, toner cartridges, and chlorofluorocarbons (CFCs) from the discarded product and dispose of them at their own cost.

The rules must be approved by all 15 member nations. If passed, they could be phased in as early as 2006.