WE all may have old gadgets and broken appliances lying around the house that we’re not yet ready to part with, secretly because we hope they’re going to work again one day but knowing full well they won’t.
A company in Ballito called ‘Recycle X’ recycles e-waste and electronic appliances and is looking for drop-off points in Durban North and uMhlanga, specifically at shopping malls and centres and estates.
READ ALSO: GALLERY: Volunteers paint and garden for Nelson Mandela Day in Durban North
Speaking to Northglen News, Thobekile Nzimande, a compliance solutions provider for the company, said they wanted to increase their reach to ensure that e-waste is not disposed of with everyday household garbage and won’t possibly end up in our oceans.
“Another reason why e-waste and appliances should be disposed of properly is because many items are comprised of hazardous substances. For example, lithium batteries should not be thrown into a bin and end up in a landfill,” she said.
The company also supports a non-profit organisation called ‘We Care’ where refurbished gadgets are supplied for reselling.
“Some of the items that are dropped off at our premises can be fixed. We refurbish them and supply them to We Care for resale. The proceeds from the sales also go towards various community including schools,” said Nzimande.
She added that when e-waste and appliances are brought in, they are broken into smaller components.
“We get plastic, hazardous items, batteries, globes, LED lights and lithium batteries which need to be disposed of correctly. Lithium batteries are hazardous waste and need to be sent to another company to dispose of correctly,” she said.
“Our main aim is to make sure that these items don’t end up in our landfills, oceans and rivers,” she said.
The company also has pickers who collect appliances and e-waste from their communities and bring them for recycling.
“We train the pickers on how to strip the component and parts. We also provide them with tools and register them on our database so they can earn an income,” she said.
The company would also like to start collection bins at schools where learners, educators and parents can drop off electronic items for disposal and recycling.
“We currently have a bin at Our Lady of Fathima which is only for the school and not opened to the public,” she said.
“We are looking for more drop-off points in Durban North and uMhlanga areas and to host more e-waste days where people can bring in their items for recycling. We recently held an e-waste day at Cornubia Mall, which was successful,” she said.
She said that, as human beings, we all need to be more responsible and respect our environment when it comes to how we discard our waste.
“Educational drives in townships are also part of our plans. The law asks that manufacturers provide education to consumers about e-cycling and recycling their products. This is a positive move because this way, manufacturers too are accountable for what they put into the environment,” she said.