Battery and accumulators Directive 2006/66/EC will be amended by 2013/56/EU in order to gradually reduce the amount of cadmium and mercury released into the environment as substitutes become generally available. Adoption of the legislation follows an agreement reached with the European Parliament at its first reading.
The exemption of batteries and accumulators containing cadmium for use in cordless power tools will end on 31 December 2016. This will give the recycling industry and consumer’s time to adapt to the relevant substitute technologies.
Also, a ban on mercury in button cells will apply 21 months after the directive enters into force however, batteries and accumulators legally placed on to market prior to the ban can still be marketed until stocks run out.
The directive will enter into force 20 days after it is published in the Official Journal (OJ) of the EU (see link below). Member States will then have 18 months to incorporate it into national law.