As of September 2023, Waipā e‑waste recyclers Urban Miners have successfully diverted over 48,800 kg of e-waste from landfill since operations began in December 2020. This is similar to the weight of an Airbus A321.
These latest numbers reveal the considerable impact that the local not-for-profit organisation is having on cutting e-waste in the Waipā District.
Urban Miners collect e-waste from the community at monthly collection events in held both Cambridge and Te Awamutu.
Attendance at these e-waste collection events has increased steadily since operations started, peaking recently with a record 93 vehicles dropping off e-waste in Cambridge in September 2023.
Collected e-waste is then processed and dismantled into basic components by volunteers at the Urban Miners depot in Cambridge. Increased dismantling of e-waste has allowed significant reductions in the fees charged to the public and has helped reduce cost as a barrier to accessing their recycling services.
To date, Urban Miners have run 44 community e-waste collection events, with a further 5 scheduled for the remainder of the year.
Urban Miners are gradually getting more of the community engaged with recycling their e-waste, but there is still more work to do.
Every New Zealander produces about 20 kg of e-waste each year. Waipā currently has a population of about 60,500 people meaning that, as a district, we produce about 1,200,000 kg of e-waste each year.