EU Ban Cadmium in portable batteries since Dec. 2016
Column:Industry News Time:2017-03-10
A law banning the toxic substance cadmium portable batteries. This ban, already agreed with EU ministers, will apply from 31 December 2016. MEPs also inserted a clause banning mercury from button cells from autumn 2015.

The report was approved by 578 votes to 17, with 5 abstentions.

Parliament inserted the ban on mercury in button cells (used in watches, toys, remote

controls, etc.) to help reduce the risk of mercury polluting the environment. Button cells

easily escape separate waste collection schemes, thus increasing the risk that they will

pollute the environment.

The new rules will allow existing batteries and accumulators to be sold until stocks are

exhausted. Manufacturers will need to design appliances to ensure that waste batteries

and accumulators can be easily removed, at least by independent professionals.

When the ban comes into force, Nickel-Cadmium (NiCd) batteries will only be allowed for

use in emergency systems and lighting, such as alarms, and in medical equipment. In

other appliances, they are being replaced mainly by Lithium-Ion (Li-Ion) alternatives.

Cadmium, which is carcinogenic and toxic for the aquatic environment, is already banned

in jewellery, brazing sticks and all plastics, under the REACH regulation on chemicals.