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Toowoomba Region residents have diverted almost 140 tonnes of e-waste (electrical and electronic items) from the region’s landfills since June 2019.

Toowoomba Regional Council (TRC) Water and Waste Committee chair Cr Rebecca Vonhoff welcomed residents’ willingness to recycle precious resources.

Cr Vonhoff said residents had been most enthusiastic about depositing electronic and electrical household items for recycling at all the region’s waste management facilities.

“This service delivers environmental savings, relieves some operational business costs and will help Council reach the state government waste reduction targets,” Cr Vonhoff said.

“Council’s Toowoomba Region Waste Management Strategy outlines our plans to reduce the volume of waste disposed at landfills and increase the volume of resources that can be recovered and reused.

“There are large costs and strict legislative requirements involved in managing landfill operations. By diverting recyclable materials from landfills, we can extend the life of our landfill cells and ensure we are not depositing a range of metals and other substances that otherwise have a more valuable future use.”

TRC Water and Waste portfolio leader Cr Nancy Sommerfield said residents could deposit electronic and electrical waste at any of the region’s waste management facilities.

Cr Sommerfield said the service was a responsible way for residents to recycle a range of electronic and electrical items that might otherwise end up in landfill sites.

“Residents can recycle a range of devices through the e-waste bins, but not large whitegoods (cooktops, ovens, stoves, dishwashers, clothes dryers and washing machines), items with refrigerant gases, individual lithium batteries or hot water systems. These should be dropped off for recycling at other sections of the facility,” Cr Sommerfield said.

“Items containing oil, such as oil heaters, can’t be accepted.

“Items that can be deposited include: all computer gear and peripherals, televisions, video, DVD and CD players, game consoles, digital and video cameras, scanners, printers, mobile and landline phones, cables, plus a range of small household appliances, smoke detectors and power tools.”

For a full list of recyclable items and links to firms and organisations that offer recycling drop-off facilities, please visit www.tr.qld.gov.au/ewaste

Cr Sommerfield said valuable recyclable materials that could be recovered from the items included plastics, steel, copper, aluminium, electric motors, gold and silver.

“Recycling e-waste also stops a lot of hazardous materials, ranging from heavy metals such as lead and mercury, to ozone-depleting chlorofluorocarbons (CFCs) and flame retardants, from damaging the environment,” Cr Sommerfield said.

Caption: Cr Rebecca Vonhoff (top left) and Cr Nancy Sommerfield with examples of e-waste that can be recycled.