E-waste recycling scheme launches in Canberra

The industry-run and -funded National Television and Computer Recycling Scheme, has opened for business in Canberra today.

The national e-waste recycling scheme will provide free pick-up of computers, hard drives, keyboards, printers and televisions to households and businesses.

Canberra is the first jurisdiction to receive the service, which will operate from Mugga Lane and Mitchell transfer stations in ACT seven days a week.

DHL Supply Chain is the first administrator to provide the recycling service to the ACT, with the Australia and New Zealand Recycling Platform and E-Cycle Solutions required to follow suit by the end of 2013.

Parliamentary Secretary for Sustainability and Urban Water, Senator Don Farrell, greeted recyclers delivering unwanted TVs and computers to the Mugga Lane waste transfer station this morning.

“People dropping off their unwanted televisions and computers for free here today, and in the future, can do so with the knowledge that these products will be recycled in an environmentally friendly way,” he said in a statement.

“Hazardous materials contained in these products, including lead, mercury and zinc, will be prevented from entering the environment through landfill. Valuable non-renewable resources, including gold and other precious metals will also be reclaimed for reuse.”

The scheme aims to curb the increasing dumping of electronic waste in Australian landfills #8212; expected to hit 181,000 tonnes by 2028 from 106,000 tonnes in 2008 #8212; and boost the recycling rate for TVs and computers from 17 per cent in 2010 to 80 per cent by 2021.

It also looks at reducing human and environmental exposure to hazardous e-waste materials such as bromine, lead, mercury and zinc, as well as meeting a material recovery of 90 per cent by 2015.

The scheme was established under the Product Stewardship (Televisions and Computers) Regulations 2011 legislation and is to be amended to align the products and product codes with the revised product codes used in import declarations.

An exposure draft of the Product Stewardship (Televisions and Computers) Amendment Regulation 2012 has been released for public comment until 17 May 2012.

The scheme is to be rolled out across the country by 31 December 2013.

Follow Diana Nguyen on Twitter: @diananguyen9

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