Proposals sought for new TV recycling programme

  • Nick Smith

Environment Minister Nick Smith today announced the first step in a new nationwide programme to encourage the recycling and safe disposal of unwanted televisions.

“The falling price of new TVs, international sporting events and the national switchover to digital transmission from 2012 are all fuelling a change from older cathode ray tube sets to flat screen high definition LCD and plasma TVs,” Dr Smith said.

“The challenge is that there is an estimated 4,400 tonnes of lead in the 2.2 million cathode ray tube TVs that needs to be responsibly recycled or disposed of.

“The Government is asking businesses to come forward with innovative solutions on how we can expand the infrastructure for TV recycling and raise awareness of how to recycle and properly dispose of this electronic waste.

“The programme is called "TV Take Back" and will be funded from the Government's Waste Minimisation Fund. Proposals are being sought from businesses, particularly retailers, to provide a recycling service in parallel with the sale of new TVs.”

A new TV is not required to receive digital television when the phased digital switchover starts next year, but some Kiwis may look to replace their cathode ray tube sets and it’s important they know how and where to dispose of them safely.

“TV Take Back is part of a wider Government plan to put in place a more enduring solution for e-waste. We have also provided $1.4 million to RCN and the Community Recycling Network to establish a network of 35 permanent e-waste depots to recycle televisions and computers. The TV Take Back programme is to complement this work with a focus on clearing the old stock of TVs.

“Further work is also being done with industry to explore product stewardship for electronic goods,” Dr Smith said.
Expressions of Interest for the TV Take Back programme are now being received and will close on 21 October 2011. Further information can be found on the GETS website