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WEEE for Wii
Wednesday 16th June, 2010

WEEE for Wii
GAME OVER: If your electrical goods time's up, please remember to recycle

It’s unlikely you’ll want to ditch your Wii just yet - but plenty of other broken or unwanted electrical items that get thrown away each year.

And so the focus of this year’s Recycle Week (21-27 June 2010) is on recycling waste electrical and electronic equipment (the WEEE directive).

During Recycle Week, Wigan Council and Recycle for Greater Manchester are encouraging residents to pledge to recycle their broken or unused electrical items.

The council’s environment champion, Cllr David Molyneux, says: “Recycle Week is a great way of reminding people about the importance of the three R’s; Reduce, Re-use and Recycle. Just remember to take your old electrical items to the nearest recycling centre and, who knows, the next item you buy may well be made from some of the parts of the old one.”

Many people have at least one electrical item gathering dust which is either broken or no longer in use. Often they don’t know what to do with it or because they know how much it initially cost, they are hesitant to throw it away.

However, recycling broken electrical items ensures that value is gathered from these old gadgets. By recycling these items, all of the components including metal, plastic and glass are separated and can be used in new items.

The council’s waste management manager Dr Gail Robinson adds: “In a world where new gadgets are coming onto the market every day, it is important that we remember to do something good with the things that we no longer use. When you consider what to do with old electrical items, please bear in mind the three R’s; Reduce, Re-use and Recycle.”

  • Reduce: Do you really need to buy a new product?

  • Re-use: If you don’t want your electrical item, maybe there is someone else who does? You could sell it, or donate it to charity.

  • Recycle: When you buy a new electrical/electronic product, find out if the retailer will take back your old one. If they can, they will arrange for it to be recycled. Otherwise you can take it to your local Household Waste Recycling Centre (HWRC).

All Household Waste Recycling Centres across Wigan and Greater Manchester accept electrical items which can then be fully recycled.

Did you know…
  • On average, each person in the UK buys 2.8 new electrical items every year.

  • In 2009, over 140,000 tonnes of small household electrical and electronic equipment was put onto the market but only 20,000 tonnes was collected for recycling.

  • In one person’s lifetime they will go through an average of 3.3 tonnes of electrical waste.

  • 15 million mobile phones are upgraded in the UK each year. Laid from end-to-end they would reach from John O'Groats to Lands End.

  • Electrical goods are the fastest growing waste stream in the UK, increasing by 5% each year.

(Data source: Recycle for Greater Manchester - Viridor Laing (Greater Manchester) Limited and the Greater Manchester Waste Disposal Authority (GMWDA) )

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