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Electrical Equipment

'Electrical' includes big things like washing machines or little things like mobile phones or toothbrushes. In fact is is anything that needs an electrical current to make it work. Electircals are now the fasted growing type of rubbish in our bins.

We buy over one million tonnes of electrical equipment every year and throw away about the same amount.

There are a number of reasons why we throw so much electrical stuff away from simply using them until they break to upgrading to get the most up to date technology.

Many of the electrical things we throw away still work so we could reuse much more than we do at the moment. We currently recycle about 40% of our old electicals.

Unlike glass, plastic or metal, electrical things can contain all of these together. This makes recycling a little more complicated because all these bits need to be separated. Fortunately, new laws mean that much more electrical equipment is now reused or recycled so our old fridge could be recycled into a new washing machine.

Electrical things often have rare or expensive metals in them like gold or platimum. This is usually part of the circuit board which makes the thing work. Whilst the amount of this valuable material in each phone for example is small, when you add up all the phones, it adds up to quite a lot. By reusing and recycling, we preserve these valuable metals rather than burying them in landfill.

These new laws now mean that companies who make electrical equipment must recycle old equipment. This is why lots of big shops which sell electicals often take old things back for recycling.

If it still works, reuse it. If it is broken, recycle it, because there are lots of places to take it from high street shops (like phones) to Recycling Centers (for any household electricals).