Millions in discarded electrical goods – Danes throw out the baby with the bathwater
This article is more than 6 years old.
There is a lot of potential to save money and resources if we change our attitude to discarded electrical goods
Research carried out by the University of Southern Denmark (SDU) shows that 22 percent of electronic household items thrown out – such as irons, blenders and coffee machines – are in perfect working order.
It would be possible to save up to 140 million kroner if these items could be reused.
“It’s a mystery to me why people throw away so many things which work,” says Keshave Parajuly from SDU’s life-cycle centre.
READ ALSO: Government launches new recycling targets
He emphasised that the number of working items discarded was even higher, but some were broken when they were thrown into the skips at the recycling station.
“We found out that if the working electrical goods in each skip were sold on for reuse, they would represent a value of at least 2,000 kroner. Every year, 25,000 tons of household appliances are collected, so the total amount gained by reusing these discarded items would be between 65 and 140 million kroner.”
Some items still in their packaging
For two weeks, Parajuly has been rooting around in the skips at the recycling station which contained small household appliances and screens. Almost five tonnes of electronic waste from different recycling stations in Odense was inspected and tested. It turned out that 22 percent of the household appliances worked perfectly, as did 7 percent of the screens.
“We even found cameras, computers and blenders which had not even been unpacked,” Parajuly said.
Thinking more cyclically
It is not only money that could be saved; the environment would also gain tremendously if electronic scrap was systematically sorted and reused.
“We need to thing more cyclically, where among other things, we repair things instead of throwing them out,” Parajuly contends.
In Sweden, it was decided recently to cut VAT by 50 percent on repairs of, for instance, bicycles, shoes and clothing in order to create more incentive to reuse things – rather than discarding them.
One thing was significant. In the 16 skips examined, not a single iPhone or iPad was found. These are products that companies buy up for resale. Parajuly hopes that this tendency will spread to other products.
Politicians eyeing possible ban of energy drinks for kids
Konservative wants health authority to assess whether Denmark should follow Norway’s lead and ban the drinks for under-16s
As speculation mounts about the PM heading to NATO, party soldiers ponder the future
Uffe Jørgensen Odde
Denmark looking to legalise abortion for 15-year-olds without parental consent
Website condemned for ranking girls according to their attractiveness
A good handful of schools have been targeted, including establishments in Zealand and Jutland
CPH POST Reporter
Astrid Lindgren sees off HC Andersen in battle of the children’s literature giants
Popcorn and penalties at the Parkeringhus penthouse – Vesterbro’s latest skyline attraction
Navigating the Changing Landscape: Tips for Businesses in the Digital Age in Denmark
This content is sponsored
Performance Review: When the best vodka is saved to last, it’s … hic … worth the wait
Mackindergarten: This is my time
OPINION: What men really mean when they say they should grab a beer one of these days