eDay Collection Stats

2007 – 2010

Number of cars through eDay sites: 57,700

Estimated number of items collected: 272,900

Estimated total tonnage: 3,220


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Recent Accolades


Pacific Ministers endorse eDay as regional approach to e-waste management

14 April 2011

The inaugural meeting of Ministers of Energy, Information and Communication Technology (ICT) and Transport, held in Noumea, New Caledonia last week endorsed a regional approach based on New Zealand's eDay model to tackle the increasing amount of electronic waste (e-waste) in Pacific Island Countries and Territories (PICTs).

e-waste and its toxic materials, including lead and mercury from old computers, is globally the fastest growing type of waste. The Secretariat for the Pacific Community (SPC) and the Secretariat of the Pacific Regional Environmental Programme (SPREP) have agreed to a collaborative approach to e-waste management in the region and will together take the lead in addressing this issue.

The highly successful Cook Islands eDay, held in December 2010, with support from the eDay New Zealand Trust, was presented to Ministers as an effective model for small Pacific Island communities. Following eDay's success, other countries including Tonga, Tuvalu and Vanuatu have already started to organize their own e-waste collection days.

"We are running out of room in the office corridors and we have thrown e-waste into the dumps in the past," said Opetaia Simati, Director of ICT for the government of Tuvalu. "We are working in collaboration with our Waste Management Project to acquire a container and use it to store e-waste until which time proper processes, legal issues and documentation have been fulfilled, and then request donors to fund the shipment off the islands to NZ or Australia."

The Cook Islands eDay project was able to secure in-country and regional sponsors as well as volunteers to cover most of the costs for collecting and packing e-waste into shipping containers, but did not have the funds nor the experience to organize the international transport of e-waste, which is classified as hazardous waste, and controlled by the Waigani Convention. The eDay NZ Trust provided this support for the Cook Islands as part of the eDay 2010 programme and is now seeking similar support for Tonga, Tuvalu, Vanuatu and other interested Pacific Island countries.

"The in-country costs for running eDay represent around one-third of the total costs," said Laurence Zwimpfer, chair of the eDay NZ Trust. "The Cook Islands eDay team was very successful in securing sponsorship to cover most of the local costs but significant levels of funding, up to NZ$2,000 per tonne of e-waste, were required to cover the other costs, such as shipping and recycling."

"When product stewardship schemes are in place, these costs will be covered by the equipment suppliers, but in the meantime PICTs will need to rely on aid support, as they simply don't have the resources," said Mr Zwimpfer. "It also seems appropriate for countries like Australia and New Zealand to step up and provide this assistance as our two countries supplied much of the electronic equipment to the PICTs in the first place. So we should now help them out by taking care of their e-waste before it starts damaging their environments."

The eDay New Zealand Trust was formed in 2010 to focus on the development of sustainable solutions for the recycling of electronic waste. It took over running the annual eDay, free e-waste recycling event in New Zealand, which in 2010 saw nearly 20,000 cars dropping off over 80,000 items of electronic waste, filling over 160 20' shipping containers.

As a long term solution, the eDay Trust believes that computer and TV equipment suppliers should establish product stewardship schemes to take responsibility for the safe recycling of electronic waste and governments must regulate to ensure all suppliers participate equitably.

"We believe legislation and regulations are needed to begin to see a real, positive reduction in the amount of e-waste going to our landfills in New Zealand and the Pacific," concluded Mr Zwimpfer.


Further information:

eDay NZ Trust: Laurence Zwimpfer Ph +64 27 430 6737 zwimpfer@xtra.co.nz
Tuvalu Government: Opetaia Simati Ph +688 20320 osimati@gov.tv