2022, not 2020 too.
It might be the beginning of a new year, but sometimes the current news cycle makes it feel like we’re still stuck in the past. Luckily over at Total Green Recycling, we’re continuously jumping forward into the circular world of the future.
So let’s talk about what the year has in store for us. The good, the bad, the hot, the reusable, the fiery, the right to repair.
Increasing our capacity in the lead up to the E-waste to landfill ban
The e-waste to landfill ban is getting closer, so in preparation, we’re increasing our capacity. We’ve been growing and bolstering our team to keep up with the increase in volume.
Our growing team isn’t only new staff, but new machinery too. We welcomed Ol’ Red late last year.
Ol’ Red is actually new, he’s a Single Shaft Rasper Shredder, with interchangeable screens that are easy to clean. This basically means we can shred more, with less contamination.
Our shredder is constantly running, getting through the massive volume of e-waste that comes through our doors. We shred it, to help separate certain materials and to make the volume more manageable before it’s recycled further.
With a growing team, we’ve been able to trial more shifts. With the oncoming e-waste ban, we will have the capacity to run double shifts to keep up with the volume.
Total Green Recycling now has their Refrigerant Recovery Licence, meaning we can accept fridges, water coolers, freezers and air conditioners. Refrigerant is a significant contributor to climate change, which is why it must be degassed properly, to ensure no harmful chemicals escape into the atmosphere. White goods hold a significant amount of recyclable material, metal, plastic, and other non-renewable and valuable resources. By sending your white goods to Total Green Recycling you are ensuring that refrigerant gases are properly managed, your white goods are recycled safely, and their valuable commodities are kept in the circular economy.
Of course, you should always try to repair or re-use your electronics before sending it off for recycling. Recycling is the last resort.
Battery Stewardship Scheme (BSC) Audit
Total Green Recycling is currently being audited to finalise its accreditationas a collector and sorter of batteries under the BSC. To read why this is exciting and important head to our article all about batteries here: The Battery revolution is here, how is WA recycling it?
Beating the record breaking heat
We all know how hot it’s been. Working in a warehouse is especially hard in the midst of summer. We’ve been making warehouse improvements to help our staff manage the heat, with more misting fans installed, access to cold drinking water and air conditioned break rooms. However there’s only so much we can do to cool down a warehouse in the middle of the Australian summer. At times the heat can cause service disruptions, and we apologise and ask for understanding, and appreciation for our workers.
Don’t forget the hot weather is increasing each year, without lowering our emissions it’s going to get worse, fast. Support the workers and communities who will be dealing with this first by mindfully consuming and using your voice and votes.
Technology Reuse Centre is open for business
As part of the New Initiatives Grant we created the Technology Reuse Centre, a mobile Re-use and Data Destruction centre, to be used at council run waste drop-off events. Several councils have rolled it out at their events with great success.
One of the barriers to reusing old electronics is driven by the uncertainty associated with how their data is managed. As a result many electronics either end up in landfill, kept in peoples homes for years until they become obsolete and no longer have a second useful life, or destroyed when they could be re-used. The Technology Reuse Centre removes that barrier by destroying or wiping data on the spot. Through this process members of the public are educated about data management and electronics reuse. We look forward to more events coming up.
Right to repair laws
We never shut up about it, but let’s get excited for the big strides the right to repair movement has taken over the past year. Due to public pressure companies such as Apple and Microsoft have pledged to expand access to repairs. They will provide tools and third party access to manuals, and change how they manufacture their items, keeping repairability in mind. It’s a sign of a changing tide when the tech giants are making moves. We expect a lot more movement on the front in the year to come.
Plastic export ban
The waste export ban was a win for the environment, however it led to some short term problems. Plastic was stockpiled and now a large portion of e-waste plastic is landfilled here in Australia because there are no onshore facilities to properly recycle many of these plastics. There have been rumblings of an onshore solution to handle mixed WEEE plastic, which we at Total Green Recycling will welcome. We’re also investigating small scale local solutions for our hand separated plastic. The industry is moving forward in finding solutions to a complex issue.
“Packaging materials are complex and these schemes, coupled with investment in growing our industry, will assist in shifting our thinking, to ultimately create an integrated resource management system that first and foremost avoids the creation of waste, with materials that are consumed then appropriately managed within the waste and resource recovery system where we maximise the recovery and recycling of these materials to be used in remanufacturing,” CEO of the Waste Management and Resource Recovery Association of Australia (WMRR), Ms Gayle Sloan, said.
We can beat it if we don’t feed it.
Containers for change, Plastic Free July and other schemes are growing quickly. There is a massive leap forward in waste education, and the general public are jumping on board.
Keep moving forward Waste Warriors! We are changing the world every day, with every decision we make. Each item you choose not to buy, each item you repair and re-use, each item you dispose of correctly has an impact.
Ask yourself why before you buy.