Recycling Tips

Why is the establishment of the WEEETRF important?

Not only is the WEEE Treatment and Recycling Facility the first of its kind in Hong Kong, it also reflects the public’s increasing interest in environmental protection and concerns over public health. The facility will help to create a better Hong Kong and a better world. Let’s be excited together for this landmark project!

Before the WEEETRF comes into operation, the majority of the public either sells WEEE to dealers, or disposes of items.
Local dealers will evaluate condition of E-Waste items; most E-waste will be shipped to developing countries for further handling. Useless or worthless parts will be dumped in landfills.
In order to recover valuable metals from WEEE, workers in developing countries sort, handle, and dismantle WEEE items under poor safety and health conditions with little concern over environmental and health impact. For example, workers burn circuit boards in open fires and break CRT monitors.
Improper treatment of WEEE damages environment and adversely impacts health. For example, CRT monitors contain lead which leaks into soil and contaminate groundwater. Exposure to mercury from LCD backlights damages the nervous system while burning plastics emits carcinogenic materials into the air.

Why should we handle WEEE properly?

WEEE contains hazardous components that are harmful to the environment and human health if not properly treated or disposed of. For instance, lead and mercury, which are usually found in electrical appliances and computers, may cause cognitive deficits in children, and damage the kidneys, liver and the neural, circulatory and reproductive systems. In addition, some WEEE contains chlorofluorocarbons (CFCs) and hydrochlorofluorocarbons (HCFCs), which destroy the ozone layer and contribute to global climate change.

How can you help?

Reduce

  • Keep records of maintenance certificates and try to repair electronics rather than replacing them
  • Follow operating instructions to avoid product misuse that can shorten product life span
  • Be environmentally conscious when shopping, buy electronics with higher durability, better energy-saving performance and lower toxicity

Reuse

  • Exchange or donate usable electronics through platforms like Hong Kong Second-hand Exchange ,to give it a new life.
  • Donate WEEE to charity organizations for refurbishment

Recycle

  • Participate in recycling programmes to avoid wasteful disposal to landfill and export for improper treatment