by Brittany Tofinchio Palmer
Colombia’s Ministry of Environment and Sustainable Development is seeking public comments on a draft decree to partially regulate waste electrical and electronic equipment (WEEE). The decree is intended to control the adverse impacts of WEEE on human health and the environment. Electrical and electronic equipment (EEE) applies to all devices with electric currents and electromagnetic fields, and devices that generate, transmit or measure currents and fields. The decree would apply to marketers, WEEE managers involved in collection, transportation, storage, and treatment of WEEE, as well as producers and manufacturers.
The decree would create requirements for producers of EEE to establish a system of collection and environmentally safe management of WEEE either directly or through a third party. Specific minimum requirements for such a system are provided. Marketers would be required to provide certain types of technical and logistical support to producers in collecting and managing the waste, including allowing buyers to deliver the WEEE equivalent of their purchase, free of charge, to the marketer. WEEE managers would have the following obligations: have proper environmental licenses; register as a WEEE Manager; ensure environmental sound management of WEEE; and remove hazardous waste in WEEE.
The decree also applies to consumers, making it far-reaching and applicable outside of the commercial sector. While no requirements are provided, it does state that consumers of EEE “should” separate WEEE from other waste, follow instructions for proper return of WEEE, and return WEEE to sites intended for that purpose.
Comments on the draft decree must be received by April 22, 2016.