Cumbria Times
A Voice of the North
4:00 AM 7th September 2021

BT Reveals That Almost A Third Of The North West Still Don’t Know How To Recycle Unwanted Electronics

New research from BT has revealed that almost a third of people in the North West don’t know how to recycle electrical waste with 46% saying that they have cupboards, drawers or bags full of unwanted electrical equipment.

The news comes as BT reveals it has recycled nearly a million pieces of BT equipment since the start of 2020, preventing nearly 170 tonnes of electrical waste from going to landfill, equivalent to the weight of 13 double-decker buses¹.

The research found that 77% of people in the North West admit to having thrown electronics into black bin liners committing the goods to landfill rather than taking them to be recycled.

The most common item people from Liverpool don’t know how to recycle is a hairdryer (34.5%) with those living in Manchester saying that cables (36%) top the list as the electrical item that most local people don’t know how to recycle.

Interestingly, almost two thirds of people in the North West (62%) have engaged in ‘wishful recycling,’ throwing unwanted electronics into the recycling bin in the hope that they will somehow reach a recycling centre.

Liz Needleman
Liz Needleman
Liz Needleman, BT Group regional lead for the North of England, said: “We made some changes in 2019 that make it compulsory to return broadband routers to us after use, which has really boosted our recycling efforts. Thanks to these changes and the commitment of our customers, we’ve prevented the release of 11,430 tonnes of carbon dioxide, the equivalent of 6,000 flights from London to Tokyo.”
Andie Stevens, Associate Director at Carbon Trust Advisory, said: “BT makes it easy for customers to return unwanted and unneeded equipment, preventing tonnes of electrical waste and plastic from going to landfill. The recycling and refurbishment programme is a great initiative, demonstrating the commitment to circularity and achieving long-term sustainability goals by reducing the carbon intensity of products.”
BT estimates hundreds of thousands of electronic equipment in customers' homes could be refurbished and recycled.