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FURTHER FUNDING FOR SAFE DISPOSAL OF FRIDGES

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To ensure the safe disposal of domestic fridges in Wales, the Welsh Assembly Government is giving local authorities...
To ensure the safe disposal of domestic fridges in Wales, the Welsh Assembly Government is giving local authorities a further£2.4million, Minister for Environment, Planning and Countryside Carwyn Jones announced today.

Since January 2002, it has been a requirement of European law that all ozone-depleting chemicals from both the insulation foam and the coolant of refrigeration equipment are removed and treated to prevent their release into the environment. The waste refrigeration equipment can then be safely recycled or scrapped.

The further£2.4 million this financial year will help councils to meet these EC requirements on domestic fridge disposal until the producer responsibility provisions of the Waste Electrical and Electronic Equipment Directive come into force. From then, the responsibility for financing the collection and disposal/recovery of domestic fridges will rest with the producers of refrigeration equipment.

Carwyn Jones said: 'The Welsh Assembly Government recognises that the management of domestic fridges continues to be a significant issue for local authorities and I am pleased to be able to make£2.4 million of additional funding available for the safe disposal of these fridges.

'It is vital that old fridges are disposed of safely, and the EC Regulation ensures that ozone-depleting substances are not released from them.

'It is expected that this year over 146,000 domestic fridges will be produced by the public and this extra money from the Assembly will be a great help towards the extra costs that proper fridge disposal creates for local authorities.'

In addition to the funding, guidance has been provided to local authorities on the safe storage of fridges and a leaflet is also available to advise consumers on how to dispose of their old fridges safely.

Since January 2002 new specialist facilities have been developed and capacity now exists to manage the expected number of domestic fridges that are discarded in Wales each year.

Notes

European Council Regulation No 2037/2000 on substances that deplete the ozone layer required the removal of ozone depleting substances (including CFCs) from domestic fridges and freezers from 1 January 2002.

UK CFC-removal standards have been developed so that industry can invest in specialist disposal facilities.

There are currently 2 specialist facilities in Wales and a further 10 in England which combined have a total capacity of approximately 3 million units.

Further information on fridge disposal is available from the Assembly website: www.wales.gov.uk, and the Environment Agency's website: www.environment-agency.gov.uk

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