Joint efforts of EPD and schools promote proper WEEE recycling at schools (with photos)

     To provide support to schools in recovering and collecting used computers and other waste electrical and electronic equipment (WEEE), the Environmental Protection Department (EPD) has held the Schools Recycle WEEE programme for the second year. Both the number of participating schools and the quantity of WEEE recovered increased significantly this year compared with the figures last year, reflecting the rising awareness of waste reduction and recycling at schools.

     An EPD spokesman said today (November 16), "Schools Recycle WEEE is an initiative to prepare for the implementation of the mandatory producer responsibility scheme (PRS) on WEEE. The programme encourages schools, students and teachers to properly recycle their used WEEE. The programme was launched last year with a positive response and helped 145 primary and secondary schools to properly recover their WEEE. This year, we held the programme again and the response was even better, with 172 schools participating and more than 7 700 pieces of WEEE recovered. The quantity increased by 40 per cent when compared with last year's figure."

     This year, 86 primary schools, 68 secondary schools and 18 special schools participated. The EPD provided assistance to schools for organising individual promotional activities and arranged for trucks to pick up the WEEE at schools in October and November. The collected items were sorted and distributed to the Caritas-HK Computer workshop, WEEE Go Green organised by St James' Settlement, the Computer Recycling Programme and the Rechargeable Battery Recycling Programme managed by the Hong Kong WEEE Recycling Association for proper treatment.

     Teachers participating in the programme said their schools assigned students to take up the promotional activities and help run the collection counters, enabling the students to learn about the importance of environmental protection. Students in charge of the promotional activities said they were glad to see such remarkable recovery of WEEE, giving new life to WEEE and reducing the burden at landfills.

     Apart from holding the Schools Recycle WEEE programme, the EPD also encourages members of the public to recycle WEEE through the following programmes and outlets:

- Computer Recycling Programme: About 900 residential collection points and 400 non-residential points for collection of used computers from members of the public;

- Rechargeable Battery Recycling Programme: Collection bins placed at more than 1 400 residential collection points and more than 1 300 non-residential collection points in commercial and industrial buildings, MTR stations and fast food chains for recycling used rechargeable batteries;

- WEEE Go Green run by St James' Settlement: Sixteen collection points and regular WEEE collection services provided for about 500 housing estates; and

- Mobile WEEE Collection Centre: Provision of mobile collection services at weekends in rotation in 18 districts.

     For further information on the programme, please visit the webpage: .

     The Government is working on the implementation of a mandatory PRS on WEEE to ensure locally generated WEEE would be properly recycled in Hong Kong. The regulated WEEE would cover washing machines, refrigerators, air-conditioners, television sets and computer products (namely computers, printers, scanners and monitors). At present, the Environment Bureau is seeking funding support from the Legislative Council. Subject to funding approval, a WEEE Treatment and Recycling Facility would be developed at the EcoPark in Tuen Mun. The operator of the facility would proactively source and collect regulated e-waste for treatment at the proposed facility and turn items into reusable materials. In parallel, the Government is drafting a legislative proposal on WEEE for submission to the Legislative Council as soon as possible.

Ends/Sunday, November 16, 2014
Issued at HKT 14:01