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Almost 10 tonnes of e-waste has left Gisborne

Tuesday 7 June, 2022

Electronic waste (e-waste) that weighs more than an elephant has been trucked out of Gisborne so it can be recycled within New Zealand.

Almost ten tonnes (9,925kg) of old computers, printers and keyboards have been dropped off at the Tairāwhiti Environment Centre (TEC) since November last year.

Council community lifelines solid waste manager Phil Nickerson says it’s been an impressive response from our community.

“We encourage anyone who hasn’t yet, to de-clutter their homes of e-waste. We thank everyone who has got the word out there as well, either at work or within their family.

“This is nearly ten tonnes of waste that won’t clog our landfills and can be recycled.”

E-waste is a growing waste problem in New Zealand, with an average of 21.3 kgs generated per person each year.

Mr Nickerson thanked the team at TEC for collecting and packing the crates each month.

“It’s been a real community project.”

The e-waste is trucked to Auckland and loaded locally by Mark Ngaranoa who has shifted almost all the e-waste crates himself.

E-waste has a high recoverable value, so items taken to the correct facilities can be processed and recycled properly, this diverts a large amount of dangerous waste and chemicals from our landfills.

Every device ever produced has a carbon footprint and contributes to human-made global warming.

Council’s Waste Minimisation Team and TEC partnered with TechCollect NZ (TCNZ) to trial the collection scheme.

TCNZ senior policy manager Michael Dudley says these awesome results have only been possible with the support of valued partners.

“We can achieve so much more when we all work together.

“It’s wonderful to see the good folk in Tairāwhiti making such great use of TCNZ’s free, safe, and responsible e-waste recycling programme.”

Mr Dudley says TCNZ, Council and TEC joined forces in late-2021 and have made a major dent in the community’s e-waste stockpiles in such a short period.

“Special thanks to the Council and TEC teams for helping TCNZ bring a much-needed e-waste recycling solution to the East Coast.”

On more than one occasion, Gisborne dispatched the most e-waste in the country and was the third top-performing region in the TCNZ national network.

TCNZ is a New Zealand not-for-profit organisation that provides a free national service to help Kiwi households and small businesses recycle their e-waste safely and responsibly.

TEC is open from 9am to 3pm Tuesday to Friday, and 11am to 1pm on Saturdays.

They do not accept televisions but do accept the following:

* Personal and laptop computers and associated cables

* Tablets, notebooks and palmtops

* Computer monitors and parts (for example internal hard drives and CD drives)

* Computer peripherals and accessories (for example mice, keyboards, web cameras, USBs and modems)

* Printers, scanners, and multi-function devices

* Cameras and video cameras.