Wednesday 24 January 2018
Free e-waste initiative a
Clutha District Council’s first “e-waste freebie” initiative
was a big success.
Earlier this month, Council set aside $2,000 of the Waste
Minimisation budget so a limited number of TVs and computers could be collected
for recycling at Mt Cooee. Customers could drop them off for
Waste Minimisation Officer Laura Gourley said she thought it
would take at least a week for the fund to be finished, but the response was so
exceptional that it only lasted three days.
“In fact more than 100 items had been collected the day
after it started, and we ended up with more than double the initial number of
expected items to be recycled.
Unfortunately we couldn’t keep extending the fund
indefinitely, so after three days we had to end the initiative.”
Despite the early finish, we collected 230 items which
will be transported to Cargill Enterprises in Dunedin for recycling. The final
cost of $4,500 was funded from this year’s Waste Minimisation budget.
Miss Gourley wanted to thank all the people who made the
effort to recycle their e-waste during this initiative.
“Due to its popularity, we will be looking at what other
initiatives we could hold in the future and potentially in other communities
The usual cost to recycle a TV larger than 29 inches is $50,
a TV or computer screen smaller than 29 inches is $23 and other items vary from
free to $20 each.
Miss Gourley said the charges may seem high but New Zealand
doesn’t have safe recycling facilities to handle computer monitors and TVs so
these are sent off-shore. The charges help pay for the ethical recycling of
As part of our Waste Management and Minimisation plan we
have lobbied the government to develop a product stewardship scheme for
e-waste. This would stop items ending up in the landfill and would see the
recycling cost built into the purchase price of products.