Awareness for battery recycling increasing worlwide
by Anadolu Agency
ANKARAMar 24, 2015 - 12:00 am GMT+3
by Anadolu Agency
Mar 24, 2015 12:00 am
More emphasis has been placed on the collection of waste batteries, one of the biggest, global environmental threats.
According to the website of the Call2recycle.org network, 5,400 tons of broken batteries and mobile phones were collected last year in the U.S. and Canada. Since its foundation, the network has collected 45 million tons of battery waste. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) announced that Americans generate more than 3 billion discarded batteries, weighing 180,000 tons, on an annual basis. A total of 100,000 tons of old batteries are either recyclable or rechargeable, though.
European countries are increasingly more conscious about battery waste. In September 2012, the rate of recycled batteries was 25 percent. This number is expected to reach 45 percent in 2016, as it is increasingly forbidden to throw old batteries in dumping grounds or burn them. According to the 2012 rates, 36.6 pounds of electronic waste is collected per person in Sweden followed by 33.3 pounds in Norway and 20.3 pounds in Finland. Romania collects the lowest amount electronic waste with 2.2 pounds per person.
In 2007, 225 tons of discarded batteries were collected in Turkey, but this number reached 555 tons last year. Neslihan Bahar, the General Secretary of the Association of Portable Battery Producers and Importers (TAP) told Anadolu Agency that Turkey has made significant progress in waste battery collection; however, there is much more to be done. Bahar said EU countries recycle waste batteries and accumulators, which save millions of euros. "There is no battery recycling facility in Turkey. TAP works to dispose waste batteries, but Turkey should establish its own battery recycling facility," she said.
Bahar stressed that battery recycling is important to avoid hazardous emissions, the seeping of heavy metals into soil and water and most importantly, to create financial opportunities by recycling precious metals in batteries. "However, waste batteries are merely disposed of due to the lack of a recycling facility," she continued. TAP collaborates with 527 municipalities, 30 of which are metropolitan municipalities, to raise awareness and accelerate the collection process. Aside from municipalities, techno markets, ministries, hotels, prisons, chain supermarkets, schools, organized industrial zones, the General Directorate of Turkish Post (PTT), the Security General Directorate, the Turkish Armed Forces and the Directorate of Religious Affairs are the other institutions working together with TAP.