I dropped a small carton of ‘stuff’ off at the eDay collection centre in Wellington this morning.
Even though I had only a couple of items, it’s good to know that precious metals will be recovered from the dead gadgets.
Things were busy when I arrived at about 9.45. The collection had opened at 9 am, and already there were crates full of ‘waste’.
The volunteers kept it smooth
A huge number of volunteers were keeping the cars moving smoothly to the correct places, while others accepted the goods and stacked them appropriately. Still others were driving forklifts.
Despite rain across much of the country, over 966 tonnes of old computer equipment and mobile phones were diverted from landfills across the country today in the third national eDay.
The free drive-through recycling event saw 15,700 carloads of electronic waste (e-waste) dropped off at 38 centres from Kaitaia to Invercargill ….
Thanks to all the organisations and volunteers involved in making this happen.
From New Zealand the electronics go to an accredited recycling scheme in South Korea:
“Our partners use accepted international processes to ensure the safety of workers and maximise recovery of materials. They are able to recover over 95% of the materials in a computer for reuse including precious materials such as copper, lead, zinc, gold and silver,” Mr Zwimpfer said.
Be sure to read the eDay site for more details on how the items are recycled.
How much more ewaste is there?
It’s interesting to note that even though we’re in a recession the amount of waste collected was still greater than last year.
My only disappointment was that eDay collects only computer-related equipment. I had an old stereo I wanted to take along too.
I can only wonder at how much electronic waste there must be in the world. If our tiny population of just over 4 million can come up with 55 shipping containers’ worth in one year, what must the USA produce (just to pick one country)?
Let’s see, WolframAlpha tells me the USA has 306 million people. If they had as much e-waste per capita as we turned in today, that would fill around 4,200 containers. Apparently a container ship carries around 15,000 containers.
There are plenty of other countries with high rates of computer use. What do they all do with their dead and unwanted computers gear?
Hmmm, makes you think.