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  QUESTION: Recycling of Cathode Ray Tubes and managing e-waste, 06 Feb 2006, Victoria Australia

Enhance IT is a not for profit community group in Bendigo, central Victoria which receives donations of computer equipment from businesses, organisations and individuals. These computers, where possible are refurbished for distribution to low-income earners, pensioners etc and non-profit organisations in the local community. Enhance IT's aim for computer equipment not suitable for refurbishment is to divert it from landfill and not export to overseas re-processors which just moves the problem to what is probably an unregulated and extremely unsafe environment. Enhance IT are currently [Jan 2006] stockpiling CRT's while investigating options for disposal, reuse, reprocessing of CRT's. Enhance IT believes stockpiling is not a sustainable option.

As a result of this project we have a large number of computer monitors which we would like to dispose of ethically and would value your opinion regarding the best method for disposal of these items.



----- Original Message -----
From: "Enhance IT"
To: The LEAD Group
Sent: Tuesday, February 07, 2006 8:32 AM
Subject: Re: Recycling of CRT's and managing e-waste
Dear Hasibah
Thank you for your response. I will explore the various options put forward and see how they go.

ANSWER: 06 Feb 2006

Dear Leo
We forwarded your enquiry to the Department of Environment and Heritage (DEH) as well as to our Lead Safe Electronics Egroup ( ) and we received a reply from the egroup but just in case Michael Bissell from DEH has anything to add, I am copying this email to him.

In answer to the best option for disposal, reuse, reprocessing of CRT's, I can state two of the organisations that are very much into this process of recycling and refurbishing CRT's and transforming e-waste into e-commerce.

One is MRI and the necessary information can be found at
and the other is HMR AUSTRALIA PTY. LTD. and the website is This has branches located at Sydney, Melbourne and Adelaide in Australia.
Also you can refer to this other site Silicon Valley Toxics Coalition, which is the most comprehensive site on high-tech impacts on community, worker and environmental health.

Hope this would surely help you in solving the problem.
Hasibah Keriwala
Volunteer Information Officer/ Researcher.


----- Original Message -----
From: Bissell, Michael
To: The LEAD Group ; enhanceit(AT)bigpond(DOT)com Cc: Bainton, Paul
Sent: Monday, February 06, 2006 3:09 PM

Dear Leo and Elizabeth,
Thank you for your inquiries.

Leo, in addition to the contacts provided by Hasibah, I would suggest you also contact Mr Peter Nechaef at Sims recycling on 02 9956 9100 or go to their web site for further information - and

Also, in case you are not aware, there may be a cost to the end user (yourself in this case) for recycling computer equipment. The costs are generally $15 (though they may be as much as $30) for a monitor and $10 for a box and prices decrease for the smaller components.

Re the query from the waste collection company, we are not in a position to provide direct advice for legal indemnity reasons. However, one of the main drivers for the development of product stewardship arrangements for various products, particularly electrical products, is to reduce the risks to the public and workers during any reuse, refurbishment, recycling and or resource recovery operations. Of particular concern is the potential for the hazardous components contained within these products, including lead, mercury, cadmium, brominated flame retardants etc to be made available in the environment through their disassembly or destruction. While I am not aware of any research into whether or not this occurs, or is likely to occur during crushing, I would strongly suggest the company does its own due diligence and seek advice from the relevant EPA as to the potential issues, and whether or not for example the EPA may require the loading and crushing operations to be covered or vacuumed or indeed done in a closed or controlled environment.
If I can provide any further assistance please do not hesitate to contact me.
Michael Bissell
Assistant Director
Environmental Stewardship Section
Department of the Environment and Heritage
Parkes, ACT 2600

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