This fact sheet provides important information about changes to the National Television and Computer Recycling Scheme.
What is the scheme
The National Television and Computer Recycling Scheme was established in 2011 to provide Australian householders and small business with access to industry-funded collection and recycling services for televisions and computers.
The scheme has responded to high demand from consumers for e-waste recycling services. To date, more than 1,800 collection services have been made available to the public and more than 130,000 tonnes of television and computer e-waste has been collected and recycled under the scheme. This has diverted hazardous materials away from landfill and enabled the reuse of valuable resources contained in e-waste.
The scheme has also created employment opportunities within the recycling sector, and assisted local government manage e-waste by providing alternative collection services.
The scheme supplements state, territory and local government e-waste management, but does not entirely replace these activities.
Changes to the scheme
An operational review of the scheme was announced in 2014 to consider what further adjustments could keep the scheme operating efficiently.
Following extensive consultation with scheme stakeholders on proposed changes, the Australian Government is going ahead with the proposals which received strong public support.
These changes improve the operation of the scheme and ensure its ongoing success.
These changes will not materially affect the day-to-day services provided to householders and small business.
Scheme recycling targets are increasing to better meet strong public demand for recycling services and ensure stability and ongoing capacity in the e-waste recycling industry. From 1 July 2015, the target trajectory for industry-funded recycling will be raised to 50 per cent of available e-waste for the 2015-16 financial year reaching 80 per cent in 2026-27. This target will enable the scheme to deal with legacy waste sooner.
The cost of managing the remaining 50 per cent of available e-waste continues to be the responsibility of state, territory and local government.
Improving accuracy and decreasing costs
From 1 July 2015 a waste arising scaling factor of 0.8 per cent will apply to computers, reflecting higher exports of these products. For printers, computer parts and peripherals which are less frequently exported than computers, the waste arising scaling factor will be 0.88 per cent. The waste arising scaling factor of 0.9 per cent will remain for televisions, reflecting no change in the export trends for this product type.
From 1 July 2015, product codes for televisions will become weight-based rather than screen size-based; product codes will also be split to reduce weight variation of products within a code; and other product codes will be added or removed to reflect changes in technology. Conversion factors for specific product codes will better reflect current product weights, reducing costs to industry.
More effective administration
To ensure more timely and efficient management of target data, the settlement date for liable parties to finalise their import data with the Department of Immigration and Border Protection and notify the Department of the Environment of any changes will be 31 October of each financial year from 2015-16.
AS 5377 Certification
The aim of the scheme is to reduce the impact of television and computer e-waste products on the environment and to reduce the impact that substances contained in these products have on the health and safety of human beings. As the rate of e-waste recycling increases nationally, it is essential that all stakeholders commit to best-practice health and safety and environmental processes.
From 1 July 2016, the Australian Government will require co-regulatory arrangements to only contract with recycling service providers that are certified to AS 5377: the Australian Standard for the collection, storage, transport and treatment of end-of-life electrical and electronic equipment. This will ensure a consistent industry standard for scheme recycling providers and ensure positive work health and safety outcomes. This start date reflects requests from industry to allow adequate transition time.
The Australian Government is also implementing a number of non-regulatory changes to enhance the scheme including improved stakeholder communication and an expectation that co-regulatory arrangements effectively communicate their contracting processes, particularly any changes in terms, to their service providers.
The Department of the Environment and co-regulatory arrangements will provide additional information on market trends and capacity to the recycling industry to assist e-waste business planning. These changes will assist scheme participants to better understand market conditions and other relevant information in planning for their business.
For more information on the National Television and Computer Recycling Scheme visit the Department of the Environment website at: www.environment.gov.au/ewaste or contact firstname.lastname@example.org or call the Product Stewardship Line on 1800 332 783.
Factsheet last updated on 10/06/15