an end to landfilling
Westmorland-Albert Solid Waste Corporation
uring the summer of 2003, Noranda (one of the world's largest recyclers
of electronics and a major recycler of copper, nickel, gold, silver,
platinum, palladium, and lead) opened their third end-of-life
electronics recycling facility in North America and the first in Canada.
(image: Westmorland-Albert Solid Waste Corp.)
Having found a market to recycle 100% of end-of-life electronics
including not only computers, but also printers, fax machines, and
copiers, the Westmorland-Albert Solid Waste Corporation developed an
Electronic Waste Recycling Program that was launched in January 2004.
Pleased to be the first solid waste commission in Atlantic Canada to
take on such an initiative, the Corporation was able to do so through
funds received from the New Brunswick Environmental Trust Fund. In
November 2003, the Corporation was awarded $62 000 through ETF to launch
the electronic recycling initiative for residents and businesses of
southeastern New Brunswick.
"The Corporation began a residential computer drop-off service
in 2001. Reusable computers were donated to NB Computers for Schools
while non-reusable materials were sent to a local recycler,"
comments Bill Slater, General Manager. "It was not long before we
noticed that most computer equipment was not usable for the Computers
for Schools Program while in 2002 the local market for the non-reusable
hard-drives fell through."
Electronic Recycling Launch, February 27, 2004
Mouse-cord Cutting ceremony with Bill Slater Westmorland-Albert
Solid Waste General Manager, Cindy Thomas Plant Manager – Noranda
Recycling Facility in Brampton, ON, Minister of Environment & Local
Government Brenda Fowlie, and Corporation Chairman Norman Crossman
During the program funding (January - March 31, 2004) the Westmorland-Albert
Solid Waste Corporation accepted, free of charge, residential and
commercial electronic waste. Examples include: computers, hard drives,
mainframes, monitors, circuit board, typewriters, video games,
calculators, telephones, cell phones, fax machines, photocopiers,
pagers, VCR/DVD players, and audio/video equipment.
During this time, the Corporation recovered and diverted from
landfill approximately 5500 pieces of end-of-life electronic equipment
and shipped four 53'-tractor trailer loads of the e-waste to Noranda
Recycling in Brampton, Ontario.
Every Friday and Saturday, residents and businesses of Westmorland,
Albert, Kent and Kings counties are able to responsibly dispose of their
end-of-life electronic waste at the Westmorland-Albert solid waste
management facility. The fee remains free for residential waste;
however, a tipping fee of $52.60 applies to commercial e-waste.
"Recycling electronic equipment is quite a costly
endeavor," notes Bill Slater. "One tractor trailer load of
approximately 15 metric tonnes of e-waste cost close to $20 000 to
recycle. Landfill diversion is our main goal. That's why in our eyes,
the cost of landfill space versus the cost of recycling balances itself
out in the long run."
By the end of 2004, the Corporation estimates that 6 trailer loads of
electronic equipment, weighing approximately 80-85 metric tonnes, will
have been diverted from landfill and sent for 100% recycling.
Presently, reuse opportunities do exist for electronic waste.
Computers and other equipment can be donated to local charities, youth
groups, and NB Computers for Schools. For more information on the
Computers for Schools Program, visit www.schoolnet.ca/cfs-ope.
Possibilities exist through electronic equipment manufacturers.
Manufacturers must be contacted for shipping and cost guidelines. In
most cases recycling fees are required.
staff unloading collected end-of-life electronic equipment during the
mobile collection campaign. Residents and businesses were able to bring
and properly dispose of their electronic waste at the collection
Also, Electronics Product Stewardship Canada (EPS Canada) is
developing a national electronics end-of-life program in Canada. As a
not-for-profit organization, EPS Canada will work with an array of
partners and stakeholders to design, promote and implement sustainable
solutions for Canada's electronic waste problem.
Their goal is to develop a national program with standard
environmental handling fees and reporting across the country while still
allowing for provincial flexibility. This is a model that is in place
today in many European countries and is considered a key element of
successful program implementation.
October 1, 2004, marked the first day of Alberta's new electronics
recycling program, the first province-wide initiative of its kind in
Canada. In the initial phase of the program, televisions, computer
monitors, CPUs, laptops, electronic notebooks and printers are accepted
for recycling at various drop-off locations. Starting in February 2005,
an environmental fee, ranging from $5 to $45 (depending on the item),
will be placed on each product included in the program.
What does the future of electronic recycling hold for New Brunswick?
Currently New Brunswick, along with the other Atlantic Provinces, is
working to develop an electronic stewardship program. This program will
allow other regions of NB the opportunity to effectively divert e-waste
from landfills and allow the Corporation to maintain the Westmorland-Albert
Electronic Recycling Program.
In the interim, the Westmorland-Albert Solid Waste Corporation will
continue the Westmorland-Albert Electronic Recycling Program for its
residents and commercial customers in southeastern New Brunswick. Proud
of its commitment to landfill diversion, this initiative demonstrates
the Corporation is truly a leader in responsible waste management on
both a provincial and national level.
For more information please contact:
Christa Methot, Community Relations Coordinator
Westmorland-Albert Solid Waste Corporation
Tel: (506) 877-1050