Australians buy enough batteries every year to circle planet Earth 2.3 times, and 90 per cent of these have been going to landfills.
This is a big problem because batteries should never be placed in any regular rubbish or recycling bins where they can create sparks and ignite fires in the bin, in transport trucks or at the landfill.
All batteries eventually corrode, and their hazardous contents end up in soils and waterways, causing damage to wildlife and people.
So, it’s never been more important or as easy to make the right choice when disposing of used batteries, whether at home, at work or at play.
North East Waste and Richmond Valley Council are working with Australia’s official battery recycling scheme, B-cycle, to encourage Australians to recycle any used batteries correctly, including items such as power tools and toys.
There may be confusion from the fact that some batteries are sold as reusable or rechargeable; however, under no circumstances do they or any other battery belong in the kerbside recycling or waste stream at the end of their life.
Lithium-ion (rechargeable) batteries are of particular concern due to their high volatility and their increasing use in many everyday appliances.
Here’s how to dispose of used batteries safely.
- Remove batteries from the appliance (if not embedded)
- Tape the terminals of batteries to prevent the risk of fire
- Put them in a glass container and keep them out of reach of children
- B-cycle them at the nearest Drop-off point located at your council’s Community Recycling Centre at newaste.org.au/crc or visit bcycle.com.au/drop-off/
For further battery safety information visit: bcycle.com.au/how-you-can-b-cycle/battery-safety/