As Australians increase their reliance on technology, it is imperative that when electronic devices reach the end of their life that they are disposed of responsibly and in an environmentally sustainable way.
Around 90% of what’s used to make televisions and computers can be recycled, yet more than 1.5 million are dumped in Australian landfills each year posing an environmental risk due to the hazardous materials contained in them including heavy metals and broken glass.
To prevent this, computers and televisions were banned from being disposed of to landfill in metropolitan Adelaide from 1 September 2012 under the South Australian Environment Protection (Waste to Resources) Policy 2010. Computers, televisions and fluorescent lighting were banned from the rest of the state from 1 September 2013.
Televisions, computers and computer equipment, fluorescent lighting and other lights containing mercury, such as Compact Fluorescent Lamps (CFLs) were banned. Householders should not put these items into any of their household waste or recycling bins.
It is illegal to dump unwanted e-waste on the street or in a public place (including public bins). Dumping e-waste is never a free option as the costs to local and state government to collect and clean up e-waste are passed onto the local community and the environment.
What to do with e-waste
Televisions and computers
Yorke Peninsula Council offers e-waste recycling options as part of our existing services, with televisions and computers accepted for free at our 3 Transfer Stations and stored separately. Read more about the Transfer Stations, their operating hours and locations here.
The new National Television and Computer Recycling Scheme provides householders and small business with access to free drop-off services for televisions and computers. This new scheme is funded by the television and computer industry and builds on existing recycling efforts by councils, charities and other organisations. For a list of all free e-waste drop-off locations in South Australia, visit Green Industries’ website.
Fluorescent tubes and other lighting
Householders can drop off household lights including halogen, incandescent and fluorescent globes for free at any Banner Hardware, Mitre 10 or True Value Hardware stores in South Australia.
Other electronic waste
Other household electrical goods such as kettles and hair dryers can be taken to a recycling centre or Council’s Transfer Stations (at a fee) as they are also banned from landfill and should not be placed in your red general waste bin or yellow recycling bin. For further information about this type of electrical waste and why it cannot be placed in these bins, visit Green Industries’ website.
There are also several commercial recycling companies who accept electronic waste for recycling, although this may be at a fee. Check the Green Industries’ website for current listings and information about e-waste.
Download a PDF version of this information here: Electronic waste disposal and recycling information sheet