An Australian council which claimed that the majority of the hard waste, including electronic waste such as old cell phones, was recycled and has been forced into an embarrassing retraction by a group of primary school students. The 11 and 12-year- old students, from Mt View Primary School, found that barely 40 percent of all hard waste collected ended up being recycled – with almost all electronic waste ending up as landfill.
“We called council because we were interested in how they approach hard rubbish collection, but it turns out they just dump e-waste,” says Emma, who was one of the six young students who made the discovery. “Council told us if you’re prepared to take it to a collection point it can get recycled, but unless you take it to them and pay a fee to have it transferred it ends up at the tip.”
The findings fly in the face of the statement made by Mayor Greg Male that the majority of hard rubbish collected by Monash Council was sent for recycling. The six students surveyed the waste and recycling team of the council and were stunned to find that all old cell phones, computers, and televisions ended up being sent to landfill, despite the growing worldwide awareness of the danger posed to both the environment and to human health by electronic waste.
Mayor Male had previously referred to Monash Council as being a “leader in recycling”.