The National Television and Computer Recycling Scheme requires the television and computer industries to fund collection and recycling of a proportion of the televisions and computers disposed of in Australia each year. The scheme’s long-term goals include the diversion of potentially hazardous television and computer waste from landfill, an increase in the recovery of useable materials and greater access to recycling for communities across Australia.
The scheme’s design includes a stepped implementation over a number of years, with industry taking responsibility for a progressively higher proportion of total waste televisions and computers each year, from 30 per cent in 2012–13 to 80 per cent by 2021–2022. Television and computer waste beyond these targets remains the responsibility of state, territory and local governments.
Companies importing or manufacturing over a specified threshold of television or computer products are liable under the scheme and must join and fund an approved co-regulatory arrangement to provide collection and recycling services on their behalf. All liable parties met their obligation to join a co-regulatory arrangement in 2012–13.
Three approved co-regulatory arrangements were operational in 2012–13: DHL Supply Chain (Australia) Pty Limited, Australia and New Zealand Recycling Platform Limited (ANZRP) and E-Cycle Solutions Pty Ltd.
A total of 635 collection services, including drop off points at major electronics retailers and local government and other waste facilities, as well as temporary collection events, were provided by the three co-regulatory arrangements between the commencement of the Scheme and the end of June 2013.
An estimated total of 137,756 tonnes of televisions and computers reached end of life in Australia in 2012–13. Industry’s target under the scheme was to recycle 30 per cent of this amount, or 41,327 tonnes. A total of 40,813 tonnes of recycling was achieved, equivalent to 98.8 per cent of the scheme target and almost double the estimated level of recycling prior to the scheme’s introduction. DHL Supply Chain and E-Cycle Solutions exceeded their recycling targets, while ANZRP fell short of its recycling target. E-waste not covered by the scheme target remained the responsibility of state, territory and local governments. National data is not available on the amount of e-waste recycling that occurred outside the scheme in 2012–13.