Home' The Canberra Times : CHRONICLE 8.1.13 Contents THE CHRONICLE, Tuesday, January 8 2013 - 16
Tiny's Green Shed employee, Nicholas Watson, stacks televisions last May after the start of the National Television and Computer Recycling Scheme.
Picture: Graham Tidy
E-waste on the rise in Canberra
Record numbers of
ABOUT 10 tonnes of old televisions
and computer monitors are being
tossed out of ACT homes each day, the
ACT government claims.
There has been a huge increase in
e-waste disposal since the introduction
of the National Television and Com-
puter Recycling Scheme in May last
Since then more than 2000 tonnes
of e-waste have hit the Mitchell and
Mugga Lane Transfer Stations.
So where does it all go?
A lot of it heads straight to national
recycling firm MRI based in Fysh-
wick. There it is broken down into
component parts. What they can't
handle gets trucked to Sydney and
Melbourne where it gets recycled or
By then it becomes a federal
government responsibility where they
are beholden to the UN's Basel
Convention which aims to stop
developed countries exporting hazard-
ous waste to developing countries.
New guidelines for e-waste are under
consideration for the convention.
The guidelines follow reports over
the past few years about developing
nations receiving loads of hazardous
e-waste, which has led to major health
problems in those countries.
Minister for Territory and Muni-
cipal Services Shane Rattenbury said
the amount of recycled televisions and
computers since the scheme opened
had more than doubled the 795 tonnes
of e-waste received for the entire
2010-11 financial year.
This is important as these products
make up an increasing part of the
overall waste stream, contain valuable
materials that can be re-used and
contain hazardous materials which
need to be managed in a safe manner,''
Mr Rattenbury said.
He says more e-waste collection
sites in the ACT are expected by June
2013 once locations are found by other
MRI sales and marketing director
Bruce Jackson said in response to the
increased volume they were looking to
augment their existing recycling facil-
ity in Fyshwick in the short term.
In the long term we are looking for
a larger facility to move into,'' Mr
Meanwhile DHL Supply Chain
(Australia) Pty Limited, the provider
of the free and ongoing recycling
service for Canberra and the surround-
ing region, is also dealing with the
influx of televisions, computers, print-
ers, keyboards, mice and hard drives.
DHL senior director service logist-
ics and envirosolutions Peter Bruce
said they recycle about 90 per cent of
the e-waste in Canberra.
We try to recycle the majority in
Canberra but we do get some spikes
that we have to deal with,'' Mr Bruce
He said they had a fantastic week
over the Christmas/New Years' break,
which would have pushed the amount
of e-waste received well past the 2000
tonne mark since the scheme was
Canberra is the leading location
around Australia,'' Mr Bruce said.
The scheme does not cover other
electronic waste such as mobile
phones, which are already covered by
the voluntary scheme MobileMuster,
or DVD players and video recorders.
Further details about the free
e-waste recycling in the ACT are
available at www.tams.act.gov.au
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