Q: What is RoHS and which products are affected?
A: Directive 2011/65/EU "Restriction of Hazardous Substances” in electrical and electronic equipment per EU Directive 2011/65/EU and its amendments.
RoHS applies to the following substances:
- Lead (Pb)
- Mercury (Hg)
- Cadmium (Cd)
- Hexavalent Chromium (Cr6+)
- Polybrominated biphenyl (PBB)
- Polybrominated Diphenyl Ether (PBDE)
- Bis(2-ethylhexyl) phthalate (DEHP)
- Benzyl butyl phthalate (BBP)
- Dibutyl phthalate (DBP)
- Diisobutyl phthalate (DIBP)
To comply with the EU RoHS legislation, each of these substances must either be removed or reduced below the maximum permitted concentrations in any products containing electrical or electronic components placed on the market within the European Union.
All consumer and commercial electrical and electronic products are affected.
Q: What is the difference between lead-free and RoHS-compliant?
A: While lead (Pb) is the most widely used toxic substance in electrical and electronic equipment (EEE), the term "lead-free" often implies the product contains no lead, but in some instances denotes the presence of lead below a defined maximum concentration. RoHS restricts ten substances, lead among them. To be compliant with the RoHS Directive, the presence of each of these substances must be reduced below their allowed maximum concentration values (MCV), or an applicable exemption taken.
Q: What are the benefits of the RoHS Directive?
A: The production of these raw materials and their eventual disposal can cause damage to both the environment in terms of pollution and to human health from occupational exposure and exposure following disposal. The elimination of these materials from use in products will reduce the environmental and health risks of exposure early in the supply chain.
Q: What is Fortinet's approach to the RoHS issues?
A: Due to concerns about the environmental and health impacts of hazardous substances used in electrical products, Fortinet completed a transition to Restriction of Hazardous Substances (RoHS) compliance. We respect the global environment and are committed to environmentally responsible products and behavior. Fortinet fully support restrictions of hazardous substances that could reach the environment when such equipment reaches its end-of-life disposal.
Q: What is Fortinet's verification standard for RoHS compliance?
A: Fortinet follows the RoHS Directive (2011/65/EU) and considers a product to be RoHS-compliant if the maximum concentration value is less than 0.1% by weight in homogeneous materials for lead, mercury, hexavalent chromium, brominated flame retardants (PBBs and PBDEs) and phthalates (DEHP, BBP, DBP, DIBP), and is up to 0.01% by weight in homogeneous materials for cadmium, or if an applicable exemption is taken as defined by the Directive.
Q: My company is based in the USA. Does the European Union RoHS legislation affect us?
A: If you place Fortinet products on the market to any European Union member country, yes, you are affected.
Q: How will Fortinet identify European Union RoHS-compliant products?
A: All EU RoHS-compliant products shipped from Fortinet have integrated into the serial number an identifier for RoHS-compliance. RoHS compliance is now a CE mark directive. Therefore, the CE mark must be placed on the shipping box and product.
Q: How does Fortinet verify the materials from its vendors and suppliers are EU RoHS compliant?
A: To ensure RoHS compliance of components and assemblies, Fortinet collect and assess RoHS compliance declarations, Material Declarations and Analytical Test Results documents from the manufacturer as specified in the EN 50581:2012 (IEC 6300:2018) “Standard for RoHS2 Technical Documentation”.
Q: What is WEEE?
A: European Union Directive 2012/19/EU covers the handling of Waste from Electrical and Electronic Equipment by the producer upon a product’s end-of-life. In the EU, the "producer" is responsible for handling the WEEE product collection and recycling. The consistent interpretation of the "producer" by EU member states has been the "importer of record" (VAT Registrant), and that party must register and make available arrangements for treatment, recovery, and recycling of electrical and electronic equipment. Legislation became effective August 13, 2005. All EEE placed on the market after that date must be WEEE marked and arrangements made available for collection after the product's end-of-life.
Q: Why is the WEEE Directive needed?
A: In Europe, at the inception of WEEE, over 90% of electrical and electronic equipment went into landfill sites - around six million tons of waste every year. Emissions of hazardous substances to the soil, ground water and air that result are a risk to both health and the environment.
Q: Are the RoHS and WEEE directives related?
A: Yes, in the sense that RoHS restricts the use of hazardous substances placed into products and WEEE deals with the end-of-life recycling of those products containing hazardous substances. WEEE Directive aims to raise levels of recycling of WEEE and encourages products be designed with dismantling and recycling in mind. A key part of this is to make importers and distributors of electrical and electronic equipment to the EU responsible for meeting the costs of the collection, treatment, and recovery of WEEE. If products are designed with this in mind, there is an opportunity to reduce these costs. The RoHS Directive fits into this by reducing the amount of hazardous substances used in products. This reduces the risks to recycling staff and means that less special handling is required, again leading to a reduction in recycling costs.
Q: Where can I find more information on RoHS and WEEE?
A: Please refer to the European Commission's Environmental webpage.