Let’s Talk About Recycling Electronics

Following the holidays, a lot of us will have new electronics; the latest kitchen appliances, power tools and personal devices to name a few. If you are like me, you’ve got a stash of over the hill and damaged electronics that you’d like to dispose of responsibly. Luckily there is a program in place to help us recycle and reuse components from these broken items, and 2 of our Island Return It Centres in the Cowichan Valley are ready to receive your electronics for drop off.

Good news for recycling electronics

We take a wide variety of items from TVs, computers, medical devices and phones, etc. These are sorted, palletized and shipped to different specialized EPRA locations (Electronic Producers Recycling Association) throughout Canada. Here reusable components are carefully dismantled by hand, and plastics and metals further machine sorted for recycling, or to be sent back into the manufacturing supply chain. These electronics are not shipped overseas like many of us worry about.

Ten Electronics You Probably Didn’t Know You Could Recycle:

1.  Electric Toothbrushes
2.  Electronic Scales 
3.  Computer Cables
4.  Electric Musical Instruments
5.  Amplifiers and Receivers
6.  Microscopes
7.  Cd players, Turntables, Cds, Cassettes & Vinyl Records
8.  Fax machines/ Photocopiers/ Printers & Small Ink Cartridges (No Toners please)
9.  Hearing Aids, Blood Pressure Monitors & Thermometers
10. Electronic Key Chain

Who pays for Recycling Electronics?

We’ve come a long way when it comes to handling broken electronics in a safe and responsible manner. That’s where eco fees come in. We pay a small charge when we purchase new electronics, which covers the cost of its recycling at the other end, and why we can drop these items off for free. The EPRA is a regulated non-profit program (not funded by the government).
So, aside from taking care of our electronics so they last longer, the next important piece is keeping them out of the land fill or worse, disposed of irresponsibly (such as burning). Swing by our Island Return It Centres in Duncan or Cobble Hill to unload, and talk to one of their helpful staff if you have questions. Our website also has an extensive list of accepted electronics that can be dropped off for the EPRA program. Please note that anything made with freon (fridges, air conditioners, dehumidifiers) are not accepted. Making recycling a part of our everyday life is one of those important things we all can do to play our part in a sustainable future.