Global Earth Day diverts 225 tonnes of e-waste from landfill

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Local communities from nine countries, spanning five continents, joined Sims Recycling Solutions to celebrate Earth Day, by taking part in the world’s first ever international e-waste collection event.

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Sims Recycling Solutions' e-waste collection event in Ballito, South Africa, in celebration of Earth Day 2012

We urgently need to start retrieving a lot more of the materials - such as precious metals - which are contained in electronics waste, than we are doing at present.

Joining the one billion people around the globe already taking part in various Earth Day activities, over 2000 people participated. They cleared unwanted or broken items of electrical and electronic equipment out of their sheds, lofts, cupboards and garages and brought them along to Sims’ electronics recycling facilities, to be responsibly recycled completely free of charge.

The events took place over Earth Day weekend at the company’s electronics waste recycling facilities in North America, Austria, Belgium, Germany, India, the Netherlands, South Africa, Sweden and the UK with a total of 225.4 tonnes of e-waste collected and diverted from landfill.

The purpose of the Earth Day collection events was to promote awareness of the need to recycle redundant electrical and electronic equipment all over the world.

Sims Recycling Solutions’ Global CEO, Graham Davy, said: “Our Earth Day message is very simple. We urgently need to start retrieving a lot more of the finite resources of materials - such as precious metals - which are contained in electronics waste, than we are doing at present. By doing this, we can re-use these resources and protect the environment from the harmful emissions which arise from mining virgin metal ore or unnecessarily manufacturing new supplies of materials such as plastics.”

At Sims in Ballito, South Africa, 240 people turned out with their e-waste and held a beach clean- up. Local schools also entered a competition to win refurbished PCs provided by Sims Recycling Solutions.

In North America, 25 Earth Day events were held, 472,985 pounds of electronic waste was collected and over1300 people dropped off material

In India, the Earth Day event was held in a shopping mall in Bangalore, attracting more than 400 people who were provided with information on e-waste recycling.

In Sweden, the event was held in in partnership with Sims’ local waste management company and a competition was held to guess the weight of the material collected.

In Germany, Sims donated €1 for every kilo of e-waste collected, providing a donation of €5000 to a local school to buy computer equipment.

In Austria, Sims donated €1500 to the local kindergarten amounting to €5 per kg collected.

In the UK, four events took place with one event being attended by Chris Heaton-Harris Conservative MP for Daventry. A survey was conducted to measure awareness of e-waste recycling.

All items collected were recycled to the highest international quality standards at Sims Recycling Solutions facilities around the world, recovering the precious metals and other materials.

Graham Davy concluded: "Earth Day is all about people coming together across the globe to voice their appreciation for the planet and demand its protection. This provided us with the perfect opportunity to hold our first ever international e-waste recycling event in nine countries, spanning four continents. I would like to thank everyone, all over the world, who took part. By doing so you have helped us promote the very important cause of responsible e-waste recycling.”

For further information and specific information on Earth Day activities in individual countries, contact Jacqui Simpson 00 44 (0)1789 722042 or email Jacqui(dot)simpson(at)simsmm(dot)com

Sims Recycling Solutions (http://www.simsrecycling.com) is the world’s leading electrical and electronics recovery and recycling company with 51 sites globally and last year processed over 500,000 tonnes of electronics waste worldwide. Sims Recycling Solutions recycles all types of waste electrical and electronic equipment and enables businesses to unlock the value in their surplus computer hardware and media and communications equipment. In Europe, Sims Lifecycle Services’ asset management and recovery services enable businesses and public sector organisations to sustain the value of IT and electronic equipment, in a legally compliant, data secure, fully traceable and environmentally sustainable manner. Sims Recycling Solutions is the sister company of Sims Metal Management, the world’s largest listed metals recycler with more than 270 operations and over 6,600 employees worldwide.

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