From this week, manufacturers will be required to make spare parts for products available for the first time – helping extend the lifespan of products by up to 10 years and preventing them ending up as waste.
In March, government announced ‘tough new rules’ for electrical products to tackle ‘planned obsolescence’ – a short lifespan deliberately built into an appliance by manufacturers which leads to unnecessary and costly replacements for the consumer.
Manufacturers from 1 July will now be legally obliged to make spare parts for products available to consumers for the first time – a new legal right for repairs – so that electrical appliances can be fixed easily.
The move is expected to extend the lifespan of products by up to 10 years – preventing appliances ending up as waste.
Our plans to tighten product standards will ensure more of our electrical goods can be fixed rather than thrown on the scrap heap, putting more money back in the pockets of consumers whilst protecting the environment
The UK generates around 1.5 million tonnes of electrical waste every year and the e-waste is largely regarded as the fastest growing waste stream globally.
Business and Energy Secretary, Kwasi Kwarteng, said: “Our plans to tighten product standards will ensure more of our electrical goods can be fixed rather than thrown on the scrap heap, putting more money back in the pockets of consumers whilst protecting the environment.”
Commenting on the announcement, Environmental Audit Committee Chairman, Rt Hon Philip Dunne MP, said: “Cracking down on planned obsolescence in electrical items is key to tackling the e-waste tsunami, and I applaud the Government for taking this step.
“As our Committee highlighted during our recent e-waste inquiry, 155,000 tonnes of e-waste is chucked away in household bins by Brits every year – with no hope of salvaging the item or the precious metals they may contain. Often these metals are integral for Net Zero Britain: crucial for wind turbines, electric vehicles and solar panels.
“There should be no contest: consumers should have every right to fix items they own. Making spare parts available is the first step in creating a circular economy where we use, reuse and recycle products. We must stop using and disposing quite so much: we must take action if we are to protect the environment for generations to come.”