Revised Batteries and Accumulators Directive 2013/56/EU published in EU Official Journal


January 2014

Battery and accumulators Directive 2006/66/EC has been amended by Directive 2013/56/EU in order to gradually reduce the amount of cadmium and mercury released into the environment as substitutes become more readily available.

Adoption of the legislation follows an agreement reached with the European Parliament at its first reading on the 20th November leading to its publication in the Official Journal (OJ) on 10th December 2013. Member States have 18 months (mid 2015) from this date to incorporate the amendments into their national Batteries Regulations.

The main changes to the Directive that will affect batteries producers in Europe are as follows:

  • The current exemption of mercury containing button cells (<2% by weight) is to be lifted as of 1st October 2015; all batteries and accumulators from this point onwards will be subject to a 0.0005% (by weight) mercury limit.
  • • The current exemption of cadmium containing power tools (currently no cadmium limit) is to be lifted as of 31st December 2016; all batteries and accumulators from this point onwards will be subject a 0.002% (by weight) cadmium limit.

The amendment makes an allowance for batteries and accumulators legally placed on the market prior to each respective ban; batteries and accumulators in this situation can still be marketed until stocks run out.

In addition, a new Annex IV has been added to the Directive which outlines in more detail the requirements of Member States producer registration processes. While the aim of the new Annex is to make the EU level requirements clearer, there is potential for changes in Member State registration procedures by 2016. thinkstep's Batteries Quarterly Update service to ensures that batteries producers stay up-to-date with the transposition of this new Directive and other developments within EU batteries legislation. Please click on the following link for more information on thinkstep's Batteries Quarterly Update Service.

Source: Perchards/Sagis