What is e-waste?
If it’s got an electric plug, battery, or cord and is unwanted, then it’s e-waste.
- mobile phones
- household appliances
- power tools
- battery operated toys and more.
It could be any of a whole range of items from your work, home or even the garden shed.
Why can’t I put e-waste in my bin?
The Victorian State Government has banned all e-waste from going to landfill from 1 July 2019. This means e-waste can’t go in your regular bin.
E-waste is growing up to three times faster than general waste. Rather than putting it in the bin and sending it to landfill, we should recycle it by removing the bad and saving the good!
The good news is that e-waste is more than 95 percent recyclable!
Why recycle e-waste?
It’s good to recover and reuse.
E-waste is full of valuable resources that can be recycled and reused such as tin, nickel, zinc, aluminium, copper, silver, gold and plastic.
A million mobile phones contain about
- 15–16 tonnes of copper;
- 340–350 kgs of silver; and
- 24–34 kgs of gold.
Mobile phones can be recycled in to stainless steel goods, new batteries, and even plastic fence posts.
With more than 22 million discarded mobiles in Australia and growing, we’re throwing away a lot of precious resources!
It’s good for the environment!
All e-waste products can contain hazardous materials that are bad for our environment.
These include heavy metals like lead, mercury, and cadmium, to ozone-depleting chlorofluorocarbons (CFCS) and flame retardants.
Even small amounts of these chemicals can contaminate our environment. When you multiply these by the millions of e-waste items in landfills, the situation is much more serious.
Keep e-waste out of landfill.
In 2016, 44.7 million metric tonnes of e-waste was generated worldwide. Of this enormous figure, only about 20 per cent, or 8.9 million metric tonnes was recycled. The rest went to landfill.
This huge amount of ‘stuff’ we’re burying isn’t sustainable. When you think about all the other rubbish that goes to landfill, recycling e-waste is much smarter.
What happens to my recycled e-waste?
Devices are taken apart, then sorted into their components. Cabling, circuit boards, glass, metals and plastics are then processed for use as raw materials in new products.
E-waste from our recycling locations is processed in Australia. Around 95% of e-waste is recycled.
Where can I take my e-waste?
Large e-waste items like fridges and washing machines can be recycled through Council’s At-Call Hard Waste Service. Book a collection online at hardwaste.brimbank.vic.gov.au or call 9249 4728.
Take small e-waste items like mobile phones, light bulbs and batteries to our e-waste drop-off points.
E-Waste Drop Off Points
Outdoor drop-off points
- Brimbank Resource Recovery Centre
- Items accepted: Televisions, computers, hard drives, printers, fax machines, fluorescent tubes (including CFLs), and all types of batteries including household and car batteries
- Not accepted: Smoke alarms, air conditioners, x-ray equipment, hazardous materials and medical equipment, chemicals, whitegoods like refrigerators and washing machines.
Electronic items must fit in the e-waste hub’s 850mm x 260mm chute.
- vacuum cleaners
- mobile phones and accessories
- power tools and electronic gadgets
- laptop computers and accessories
- gaming equipment
- electric toys
Not accepted: Large items like televisions, desktop computers and printers that won’t fit in the e-waste hub are not accepted.
Indoor drop-off points
Items accepted: Household batteries, light bulbs, mobile phones and accessories
What about items that still work?
Give them a second chance at life! Find out more on our donate, sell or give away your unwanted e-waste page.
We encourage you to reduce, reuse and repair before recycling.
Your Data Management
Worried about your personal information being accessed when your device is being recycled? Go to Sustainability Victoria. It has great tips on how to remove your data from mobile phones, computers, and other devices.