EU Panel Backs Common Charger Law

A law that aims to require a common charging point for mobile phones in Europe took a step toward an assembly vote after a European Union panel backed the proposal.

The European Parliament’s Internal Market and Consumer Protection Committee voted in favor of the revised Radio Equipment Directive on Wednesday.

Under the proposal, consumers of electronic products will no longer need to buy new chargers for every new device. It would require mobile phones, tablets, digital cameras, headphones and headsets, handheld videogame consoles, and portable speakers to be equipped with a USB Type-C port, regardless of the manufacturer.

“With half a billion chargers for portable devices shipped in Europe each year, generating 11,000 to 13,000 tons of e-waste, a single charger for mobile phones and other small and medium electronic devices would benefit everyone,” said Alex Agius Saliba, the lawmaker leading the proposal.

Apple has said the proposal would hurt innovation and create a mountain of waste if consumers were forced to change their chargers. The iPhone maker uses a Lightning cable for charging while Android phones are powered by Type-C connectors.

The entire parliament is set to vote on the proposal next month.

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