A number of specialized items are particularly harmful when they end up in the landfill. Western has an extensive recycling program for these items including batteries, electronic waste, and ink toner and cartridges. All of these items can be taken to Recycling Stations located on almost every floor of every building. Read the tips below to find out how to reduce the environmental impact of these items, and how to recycle them at Western:
Batteries release toxic heavy metals into the air, ground and water when they are thrown into the garbage. Statistics show that batteries account for 88% of mercury and 50% of cadmium in the municipal solid waste stream. Luckily, special disposal practices can be used to mitigate harmful effects.
- To have the biggest influence, reduce energy consumption and use energy efficient appliances to extend the life of batteries.
- Use rechargeable batteries wherever possible. The impact of generating 1 kWh of energy using rechargeable or disposable batteries is comparable to the global warming impacts of driving a car 16 km and 457 km, respectively.
- Discard old batteries in designated bins at Recycling Stations – almost every floor in every building on campus has one! For more information on battery collection bins and services, contact Facilities Management at Ext. 88122. If you’re off campus, check out www.recycleyourelectronics.ca to find the nearest location to drop off your batteries.
Electronic waste contains substances that harm the environment when they are thrown into the garbage. Luckily, special disposal practices can be used to mitigate harmful effects.
- E-waste such as cellphones, laptops and cords release toxic contaminants into the environment. Electronic waste also contains valuable material, so why not dispose of it correctly and recover the resources?
- On campus, electronic waste can be left on loading docks at the back of most buildings. Alternatively, there are several designated drop- office receptacles across campus for e-waste. Contact the Service Centre at Ext. 83304 for assistance.
- If you’re off campus, check out www.recycleyourelectronics.ca to find the nearest location to drop off your electronics.
Ink and Toner Cartridges
Out of printer ink again? Take your empty cartridges to Island Inkjet in the UCC to be recycled or refilled. You can also drop them off with your designated representative responsible for Grand & Toy orders. The Grand & Toy representative will take all cartridges back. This helps reduce the environmental impacts of printer cartridges which can take up to 450 years to decompose in the landfill!
Parmaceuticals contain substances that harm the environment when they are thrown into the garbage. Special disposal practices can be used to mitigate harmful effects.
- According to Health Canada, incorrect disposal of expired and unused pharmaceuticals in the garbage or toilet is an increasing health concern. Evidence suggests that these substances can cause harm to aquatic species and vulnerable populations such as pregnant women, newborns, and children. If you have leftover prescription and over-the-counter drugs, they can be taken back to the Western On-Campus Pharmacy located in the lower level of the UCC.