Make sure your old electricals don’t go to waste – literally (Picture: Getty/iStockphoto)
Imagine the scenario. Your TV has just broken. Maybe your dog knocked it over (if you’re lucky enough to have a pooch), or worse, someone let the bath overflow and it was beneath the flood.
Or maybe it’s not broken, and you just want a new TV.
Whatever reason, before you bin the old one – or, for that matter, any electrical or electronic device of any kind – did you know that, by law, retailers have to collect your existing item if you buy a new one through them?
That’s right. Splashed out on a new washing machine? Whoever you bought it from must arrange for collection of the old one. Fridge on the fritz? Buy a replacement and it’ll be out of your hair.
All of this is to ensure electrical and electronic goods are properly disposed of and recycled as much as possible in order to protect our planet, both by saving resources and preventing environmental pollution and contamination.
Good news for everyone, right?
It gets better – this doesn’t just apply to physical shops. Online retailers must also provide or arrange collection of unwanted electricals on the sale of an equivalent item.
However, the volume of household waste electrical and electronic equipment (or WEEE) recycled in the last decade has remained largely unchanged.
Commenting on the figures, a Defra spokesperson said: ‘Our Environmental Improvement Plan sets out our plan to review rules for the collection and recycling of waste electricals this year. As part of this, we plan to consider what changes in legislation are needed to drive up collections of unwanted electricals for re-use and recycling.’
It’s not just WEEE that can be returned however. More and more retailers offer recycle schemes for old goods when you purchase new ones, or even with no purchase at all – often offering discounts and points in return.
So now you know, you can help do your bit. Don’t bin it, recycle it.
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