E-waste has us in box seat
WHEN your old television or computer goes on the blink do you ever feel guilty about just dumping that big hunk of plastic, glass and electronics you paid a fortune for not that long ago.
Soon, under the Federal Government's new National Television and Computer Recycling Scheme, you will be able to recycle the unwanted electronic beast for free so it doesn't wind up taking up space in our overstretched landfills.
Thanks to Lismore residents' willingness to do the right thing when it comes to disposing of e-waste such as computers and televisions, we are in the running to be included in the pilot scheme for the Television and Computer Recycling Scheme.
Under the scheme, households and small businesses will be able to drop off their unwanted televisions or computers at designated services free of charge.
The scheme aims to increase the recycling rate of televisions and computers to 80% by 2021 with collection services rolled out by industry across Australia over the next two years.
Kevin Trustum, waste and water education officer with Lismore City Council, is proud that Lismore is being considered for inclusion in the pilot the scheme.
"This is because Lismore has an existing active e-waste collection program that is running very well," he said.
"It's good to be recognised as having a system that works well.
"The e-waste recycling system at present is user-pays but if we become part of pilot scheme costs will be reduced for Lismore residents who recycle e-waste."
Michael Haddin, manager of Chandlers at Lismore is already experiencing a boost in sales, selling about 50 television sets per week with people replacing their old cathode-ray televisions sets with newer digital sets.
"Prices have dropped dramatically and change is also being forced by the impending switch off the old analog network and the digital network coming online," he said.
Zoltan Sekula the National Manager for e-waste of Sims Recycling in Queensland, where all of Lismore e-waste is processed, is on the committee for the New Electronic Waste Standards.
Mr Sekula is currently in discussion with Lismore City Council regarding the opportunity for the Northern Rivers, and specifically Lismore City Council, to be included in the first roll-out of the National Television and Computer Recycling Scheme.
"The program was to be rolled out without the Northern Rivers included in the scheme," he said.
"But with Lismore's e-waste going over the border to Queensland we are pushing to have the North Coast e-management station at Lismore included in the first roll out of the scheme.
Meanwhile, November 20 is Free Tip Day with Lismore residents able to bring bulky items including e-waste to the tip for free.