An online platform for discarded electronics in the workplace was launched in Belgium on Monday on the occasion of International e-Waste Day.
The average business or organisation stocks 200 kilos of used or defective electronics, an “unexploited recycling potential,” non-profit association Recupel – the creator of the Smartloop platform – explained.
Each year, the world produces 50 million tonnes of e-waste, but recycles only 20%, it noted. Many used or defective electronic appliances, from old computers to coffee machines, are gathering dust in businesses, non-profits, schools or residential healthcare centres.
Smartloop aims to enable businesses to offer this equipment online and include them in the recycling flow. Companies can use it to agree on prices and pick-up dates with certified collectors of their choice.
If a company offers a very high volume of electronics or if the equipment includes a large number of precious materials, such as portable computers or old GSMs, it can even make some money, said Recupel Chief Operating Officer Hederik Tijs. Otherwise, it will need to pay for transport and handling costs. In this way, prices are always in line with the market and are directly negotiated with the haulier, he explained.
To fight against waste, the Centre démocrate humaniste (cdH) has proposed a bill in the Chamber that seeks to extend VAT exemptions to non-food donations such as electronic appliances, Sudpresse reported on Monday.