9th September – European Battery Recycling Day!
September 9, 2015
First ever European Battery Recycling day to take place on September 9th
Million of Waste Batteries go missing in Irish homes each year…
Are you a Battery Recycler, Hoarder or Dumper?
- On the POSITIVE Ireland is recycling over 35% of small waste batteries placed on the market each year
- On the NEGATIVE we need to reach at least 45% target by next year
- In 2014 the equivalent weight of almost 120 million AA size batteries were placed on the Irish market –that’s about 30 per person
- 529 tonnes of batteries were recovered by WEEE Ireland for recycling in 2014 – the equivalent of over 26 million AA batteries
- It is estimated over 100 batteries are in each home in Ireland either in use or spent and waiting to be recycled each home in Ireland
- Over 2,500 tonnes of small waste batteries have been collected by WEEE Ireland since 2008 to date
- Ireland needs to reach a European Target of 45% take back rate on waste batteries by 2016 (currently sitting at about 39%)
- Not recycling batteries is a waste of important metal resources and can cause environmental damage where they are not properly managed or dumped
Dublin: September 7th:
On Wednesday September 9th the European Association of National Collection Schemes for Batteries, (Eucobat) and their Irish representative WEEE Ireland, are joining forces to ask the people of Ireland to simply look around their homes and office for any small waste batteries that need to be recycled.
Eucobat Battery Schemes across Europe, including WEEE Ireland, are using this day to remind people to recycle these small everyday waste items. The use of mobile energy from batteries has increasingly become an essential part of our life but this also means more and more batteries are discarded by consumers. The Collection Schemes for batteries across Europe and members of Eucobat, strive for a better environment by collecting ever more used batteries and recycling them responsibly.
WEEE Ireland collected over 500 tonnes of waste portable batteries in 2014, the equivalent in weight of 26 million AA batteries. Astonishingly, more than 120 million AA batteries were placed on the Irish market last year which shines a light on Ireland’s inconsistency to recycle and asks the questions of where these millions of batteries are hiding.
Studies from Europe show each household uses over 100 batteries to power up our devices including, tablets, TV remotes, electronic toys, tools and mobile phones.
These small waste batteries can easily end up in the rubbish bin but are also hoarded at home and not brought for recycling. Unfortunately 2 out of 3 people in Ireland are still guilty of not recycling their small waste batteries.
Battery Recycling Schemes all over Europe are asking people to simply recycle more waste batteries this Wednesday. Here at home, WEEE Ireland is uniquely asking people to recycle more batteries AND help LauraLynn, Ireland’s Children’s Hospice. WEEE Ireland have pledged to donate a further €65,000 to LauraLynn in the next year should Ireland reach their 2016 EU target. For every battery recycled in the WEEE Ireland blue battery boxes throughout 2015 and 2016, WEEE Ireland will continue to make a monetary donation to the LauraLynn Children’s Hospice. Since 2011 responsible recyclers across Ireland have turned their batteries into over €185,000 for the charity. This total figure will hit €250,000 if the 2016 target is reached. September 9th will also see the kick off of WEEE Ireland’s year-long Battery Recycling campaign to meet the 2016 EU Target of a 45% take back battery rate.
Speaking about the first ever European Battery Recycling Day, CEO of WEEE Ireland Leo Donovan said,” As the Irish member of Eucobat, WEEE Ireland are delighted to be part of a Europe wide initiative to spread the awareness and importance of battery recycling in Ireland. Through our battery-recycling scheme we are also in the unique position of being able to help LauraLynn – each battery donated by the Irish public via WEEE Ireland’s channels will result in a monetary donation to this amazing charity. So Irish people are not only helping their own environment but also turning their recycled batteries into much needed funds for LauraLynn.”
WEEE Ireland is asking people to bring any waste batteries to their local retailer or supermarket where they can drop them into the WEEE Ireland blue battery boxes. Batteries can also be returned to your local civic amenity site, or to a WEEE Ireland public collection day for recycling. Many Schools and workplaces also have Blue Battery Boxes for easy battery recycling.
IRELAND’S BATTERY RECYCLING STORY:
Ireland began its national battery take back programme in 2008 following the introduction of the European Battery Directive.
In 2012 we surpassed the EU collection target of 25% of batteries recycled but Ireland is currently below the 40% collection rate for small waste battery recycling and have a new higher EU target of 45% to reach by 2016. These EU targets encourage Member States to recycle and manage waste in a more environmentally responsible way. Schemes in Belgium and the Netherlands have been recycling batteries for more than 20 years and report 60+% take back rates each year. With only 7 years under our belt in terms of battery recycling, Ireland is quickly catching up on our European neighbours.