“It keeps going and going and going…”

Ben Franklin: “Nothing can be said to be certain except death and taxes”. If Franklin were alive today, he would have many items to add to that statement. In the electronics industry – and its supply chains – a contemporary item he would include is product environmental compliance.

Since the European Union (EU) passed the Restriction on the use of certain Hazardous Substances (RoHS) and Waste Electrical and Electronic Equipment (WEEE) directives in 2003, the world has begun to pay more and more attention to product environmental compliance. Eco-Compliance legislation impacting the electronics Industry and its supply chains has grown exponentially. Jurisdictions implementing legislation that impacts the electronics industry include: China, South Korea, Japan, Taiwan, Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Columbia, Venezuela, Canada and United States of America. Many are similar to the European Union’s legislation; but none are using it verbatim.

In addition to RoHS and WEEE legislations, the EU instituted an updated regulation regarding chemicals, mixtures, and articles. Registration, Evaluation, Authorization of Chemicals Regulation (REACH) began affecting the electronics industry a few years ago, and has now become the basis for many compliance activities.