The volume of e-waste is growing three times faster than other waste streams. Used electronic equipment contains valuable resources such as precious metals and can be toxic to the environment if placed in landfill.
Electronic waste (or e-waste) is a significant issue in Australia and a national waste priority. The volume of e-waste is growing three times faster than other waste stream. Used electronic equipment contains valuable resources such as precious metals and can be toxic to the environment if placed in landfill.
Mobile phones and printer cartridges have dedicated recycling programs. A range of commercial recycling services are available for collection and/or processing of other e-waste items such as televisions, DVD players and computers.
The Victorian Government has introduced legislation banning e-waste in landfill from 1 July 2019. Find out more here.
Lead-acid batteries contain substances that are toxic to the environment but are also commercially valuable. They can be recovered and recycled into new products.
Rechargeable batteries contain metals such as cadmium, which can be harmful to the environment. They are classified as hazardous waste and they must not be disposed of with general waste.
Single use batteries such as button and alkaline contain small amounts of mercury, a highly toxic but valuable metal. Recycling can recover mercury, other metals and plastics and prevent environmental contamination from batteries that erode in landfill.
CDs and DVDs are non-biodegradable and contain toxic chemicals and metals that can contaminate the environment if landfilled. Instead, CDs and DVDs can be repaired or recycled to recover resources.
E-waste in Australia is growing problem and a national waste priority. Computers in landfill are toxic; instead they can be reused, refurbished or recycled.
E-waste in Australia is a growing problem and a national waste priority. Electrical appliances contain many valuable but toxic components and should be diverted from landfill through reuse or recycling.
E-waste in Australia is growing problem and a national waste priority. Electrical appliances and batteries contain many valuable but toxic components and should be diverted from landfill through reuse or recycling.
Over 95% of the materials in mobile phones can be recovered and used as raw materials for new products. This reduces the demand on natural resources and environmental contamination from landfill.
Power tools are a form of e-waste, which is growing international problem. Recycling power tools enables the recovery of various metals and plastics and helps prevent toxic heavy metals from leaching into the environment where they may contaminate aquatic ecosystems.
When cartridges are recycled, valuable materials such as metals, plastics and inks are recovered for reuse. Diverting cartridges from landfill also prevents potential contamination of the environment from chemical leaches.
There are no recycling programs for smoke detectors in Australia. However commercial quantities of ionisation detectors are considered to be radioactive waste and must be disposed on in the approved manner.
Televisions are part of a growing E-waste problem. Recycling helps recover valuable metals and plastics and prevent lead contamination of groundwater from cathode ray tubes.
Video and audio tapes are non-biodegradable and can persist in landfill indefinitely adding to the growing e-waste problem. Instead they can be repaired or recycled.
Whitegoods are generally composed of valuable metals and plastics which can be recycled. Recycling whitegoods diverts large waste items from landfill and helps prevent toxic substances such as flame retardants from entering the environment.
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