The Dutch retail association said on Thursday it is concerned about the practical effect of new EU rules requiring shopkeepers to collect old domestic appliances such as electric toothbrushes for recycling.
The European Parliament on Thursday passed legislation which means shops will have to store electric equipment until it is collected by a certified recycling firm. Mail order firms will also have to make it possible for customers to send back unwanted equipment free of charge.
‘Some raw materials are so rare and expensive that is is cheaper to get it out of old machinery than mine it,’ Labour MEP Judith Merkies told news agency ANP.
But the CBL fears major practical problems for shopkeepers who will have to store old and dirty equipment on their premises. In addition, the Netherlands already has a working recycling scheme for domestic appliances, the organisation points out.
Under the current system, shops are only required to take back old equipment if a customer buys a replacement.
The plan still has to be discussed at a country by country level.
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