New Brunswick

Recycle NB wants to spread the word about e-waste

The new program that wants your old and unused electronic products will mark its one-year anniversary in March.

Program that takes old and unused electronic products, celebrates its 1 year anniversary

Pat McCarthy, CEO of Recycle NB, said the organization has collected fewer old and unused products than expected. (Petr Josek/Reuters)

The head of Recycle NB wants to get the word out about the province's electronics recycling program.

CEO Pat McCarthy said the organization has collected fewer old and unused products than expected about three quarters the way through the program's inaugural year. The Electronic Products Recycling Association (ERPA), a not-for-profit, industry-led organization, launched the free drop-off program in March 2017.

McCarthy said the volume collected is lower than projected because it takes a while for the news to spread. He said he still receives calls from people wondering if tires can be recycled despite the tire recycling program that's been in place for 20 years.

Pat McCarthy, the chief executive officer of Recycle NB, wants to spread the word about the province's electronics recycling program.

"It's a learning curve for us, the agent and the people out there because we got to get the word out," McCarthy told Information Morning Fredericton. 

He said the feedback on the long-sought program has been positive, adding it's here to stay.

"It's self-perpetuating and it will continue on into the future," McCarthy said.

Drop-off centres

The electronics recycling program has been a long time in the making, with activists lobbying the government for years.

Residents and businesses are able to take electronic waste, such as computers, printers, TVs and cellphones, to one of 56 authorized drop-off centres across the province at no charge. Once collected and sorted, the items are sent to a plant in Montreal, broken down and recycled, he said.

Officials said in March the program is expected to divert about 3,500 tonnes of waste annually.

Now, McCarthy wants to make sure the public is aware of the program to increase the current tonnage. 

People can locate the nearest depot on the Recycle NB website.

With files from Information Morning Fredericton