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Environment Directives

Directives 2002/96/EC on waste electrical and electronic equipment (WEEE) and 2002/95/EC on the restriction of the use of certain hazardous substances in electrical and electronic equipment (RoHS) regulate the management of waste from electrical and electronic consumer appliances and professional equipment., and substance restrictions in EEE. Both directives are currently being reviewed, and Commission proposals for recast were published in December 2008. After careful study of the scope of Directive 2002/96/EC (WEEE), FEM considers that the equipment produced by the manufacturers it represents is not covered by the directives.

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REACH Regulation (EC) No 1907/2006 and Directive 2006/121/EC amending Directive 67/548/EEC regulate the Registration, Evaluation and Authorisation of CHemicals. FEM industries are downstream users of chemical substances and preparations, and REACH has direct consequences on our businesses. The Commission developed draft guidance to support industry and authorities in fulfilling their tasks under REACH. The European Chemicals Agency is responsible for adopting the guidance and for its subsequent maintenance. The guidance documents are available from the website of the European Chemicals Agency (ECHA). More information on other related projects can be found on the Commission Joint Research Center website.

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The Eco-design Directive 2009/125/EC aims at setting EU-wide harmonised rules for improving the environmental performance of "energy-related products" (ErPs) through eco-design. The Directive does not itself introduce directly binding eco-design requirements, but rather defines the conditions and criteria for the adoption of subsequent implementing measures applicable to specific products. Its objectives are to enhance the quality and improve the environmental performance of products, and gradually drive the EU market towards eco-efficient products. The European Commission adopted a 3-years' working plan 2009-2011 listing more products to come under scrutiny. Originally targetting energy-using products, it has recently been modified to cover "energy-related products" (ErPs), products which use or influence the use of energy or natural ressources.

The European Commission also published during Summer 2008 a Communication "Sustainable Production and Consumption and Sustainable Industrial Policy Action Plan" including "objectives to develop innovation and lead markets for energy efficient products and services, exploit the potential of the internal market and export EU know-how in a low carbon economy".

The material handling industry is committed to sustainable development and innovates by taking a life-cycle approach from conception to recycling/end of life of its products. FEM shares the concerns relating to environmental protection and energy efficiency, and constantly explores ways to improve its products, while maintaining their safety and performance, and preserving competitivness of its companies.