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Digital graveyard

The Environmental Protection Bureau has launched a trial scheme to collect and recycle electronic communication and technology materials. Lasting close to one year, the scheme could lead to long-term recycling. Expectations are for 50k units and 7,000 tonnes of materials in the trial period. There will be four collection points and a collection van at 16 points in city, available for citizens, schools, NGOs and public departments, but not private companies.

The Environmental Protection Bureau (DSPA) has launched a trial scheme to collect and recycle electronic communication and technology materials, set to last about one year.
The scheme will come to a close on September 27 of 2018, with the DSPA setting up four collection points – two in Macau, one in Taipa and another in Seac Pai Van – and providing a collection van that will be parked in 16 different areas of the city on a rotating schedule.
The collection and recycling scheme will focus mainly on cell phones, televisions, computers, printer toner cartridges, printers and scanners, with the DSPA stating it plans to collect 50,000 units of electronic equipment over the course of the scheme with 7,000 tonnes of disposed electronic materials said to be produced in Macau per year.
The collected computers will be evaluated by the DSPA, with the most recent models being donated to non-profit organisations if found to be in good condition.
The electronic materials collected will be dismantled, with parts able to be re-used sent to the local second hand market or processed at the Macau incineration centre to gather and re-use its component materials.
According to the DSPA, electronic microchips will be sent to Japan for recycling, with aluminium materials to be sent to mainland China.
“Actually recycling electronic materials is more efficient in the case of electronic devices. We hope residents can ponder if they really need to purchase or replace electronic equipment,” the Director of the DSPA Environmental Infrastructure Management Centre, Chan Kwok Ho, said yesterday.
According to the DSPA, the trial run service was directly awarded to the local branch of a Hong Kong-based company named Sociedade Chong Heng Vannex (Macau), Limitada [Zhongxing Vannex (Macau) Limited] for MOP4 million, with a public tender to be opened after the trial period.
The amount provided to the company will be adjusted according to the amount of materials recovered.

Not for private
The company will also provide a doorstep collection service for schools, public departments and non-profit organisations, with the entities able to call the company to pick up materials gathered for disposal.
“We didn’t include private companies in the collecting scheme because we believe private entities should be responsible for collecting and sending the materials for recycling themselves […] We also didn’t want to affect local recycling companies that already provide those services,” Mr. Chan added.
The DSPA representative stated that after the trial period ends, the department would consider if private companies should be included in the recycling scheme.

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