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‘Shadow WEEE flows’ in Denmark

A Danish industry study, undertaken by the Partnership of Electronic Waste and initiated by the national association of Danish Industries, Danish Chamber of Commerce, the Danish Environmental Protection Act and several recycling companies, shows that only 52% of WEEE is declared to the WEEE register.

A further 36% are managed by scrap dealers and retailers out of commercial interests and are accordingly not declared as WEEE while 6% are incorrectly disposed of. From the 14 WEEE flows identified by the study, 11 ‘shadow flows’ remain unrecorded in the WEEE register and hence the Government’s WEEE statistics.

The partnership recommends legalizing some of the shadow WEEE flows: End-users should be able to hand over or sell WEEE to private collectors and hence not be forced to bring WEEE to designated WEEE collection points only.

The problem of illegal WEEE trade had been put on the agenda by institutions such as INTERPOL and the UN Interregional Crime and Justice Research Institute. As these bodies agree, improved inspection, ban on cash transactions in the scrap metal trade, a national environmental security task force and increased national monitoring are some of the solutions to overcome free-riding and illegal WEEE trade.

For more information, read the publication here (only available in Danish).

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