Posted February 2nd, 2010 by Stephen Roper

From today all shops selling over 32kg of batteries in a year have to provide recycling points under new laws for people to drop off their old batteries.

The new recycling schemes have been put into place to help the UK hit recycling targets put in place by the EU. At the moment only 3% of batteries are being recycled it is hoped that the new laws will bring this figure up to 10% by the end of the year.

If recycling targets are not hit then the UK government could face fines of millions of pounds, these fines will be passed to battery manufacturers which in time will raise the price of batteries to consumers.

It’s hoped that consumers will take all their old batteries to points to drop them off for recycling however if people are not aware of the new laws then the recycling effort could fail straight away.

The new recycling schemes are also expected to cost battery manufacturers around £3 million per year.

High street supermarket Tesco has just announced that it has joined the BatteryBack recycling scheme, which means that battery recycling points will be put in all Tesco stores nationwide to allow customers to dispose of their old batteries correctly.

Purchasing Manager of Tesco, Huw Clifford said “We believe major retails will be key in helping Britain hit battery recycling targets.” Currently only 3% of batteries are recycled in this country but to meet the European targets this must rise to 25% by 2012.

Batteryback is on target to become the largest battery recycling scheme currently having 45,000 collection points but this is expected to rise up to 200,000 collection points all over the UK.

Duracell one of the biggest manufacturers of batteries has recently signed a new agreement to help consumers recycle their old batteries by promoting the ways that this can be done. The agreement comes after a new EU directive will force every battery producer that makes over a tonne of batteries to get involved in the recycling of the products they make.

By October, 15th 2009 all producers of batteries must get involved in a community scheme for recycling them or they will receive penalties or fines from the EU.

Duracell is now waiting for their new battery recycling scheme to be approved by the Environment Agency. Duracell who currently produce over half of all batteries sold in the UK are confident their scheme will be accepted and state that as an industry leader it was their duty to get involved quickly.

The new EU law will not only apply to battery manufacturers but also shops that sell them. Any shops that sell more than 32 KG of batteries will be forced to set up in store recycling for consumer’s used batteries.

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