Technological advances and new trends, which seem to be moving faster and faster, make electronic devices, such as televisions and cell phones, obsolete. According to the UN World E-Waste Monitor 2020 data, this is 50 million tonnes, equivalent to the weight of 265 blue whales.
Additionally, this type of item may contain substances toxic to ecosystems, such as lead, which contaminates water and soil. One solution to this is to reuse it, taking it to special recycling points.
Along these lines, an alliance between WOM and Sodimac that began in 2018 and was renewed this year, right within the framework of Recycling Month, established a national network of clean points, which collected 10 tons of equipment last year. managed to do and this year wants more than 12 tons.
How many electronic devices are recycled in Chile?
In total, since its inception in 2018 to date, it has allowed the recycling of over 32 tonnes, which is equivalent to around 130,000 devices. Operated by TriCiclos, a company focused on waste management, these points have received mostly small electronic equipment – such as screens and speakers – followed by cables, cell phones and tablets.
Maximiliano Proano, undersecretary of the environment, stressed that “batteries and electrical and electronic equipment are two of the six priority products established by the REP law. It is estimated that more than 200,000 tons of this waste is generated in Chile, Of which less than 5% is recycled. This is the reality we want to change.”
According to the TriCiclos report, recycling of various materials at clean points across the country is set to increase by 32% in 2022 compared to the previous year, although 2020 and pre-pandemic levels have yet to be surpassed.
This study revealed that La Serena, with a collection center for electronic equipment in the Sodimac store, is the commune with the most recyclers in the country, while La Reina is the most important in the metropolitan area and third nationally.
Within the framework of this alliance, the collected raw materials are compacted and sent to recycling companies to convert electronic components, thereby starting new production processes that lead to the development of new device chargers, cell phone batteries, headphones, etc. ends.
TriCiclos CEO Rodolfo Poblet explained that promoting circular economy initiatives “requires alliances that articulate cooperation between companies.” “The recovery project in which we participate has allowed us to close an effective cycle for electronic waste,” said Poblet.