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In Photos: Why Bruges stadium is full of fridges

Club Brugge, like most sports teams, has had a very quiet year.

With the fans banned from watching their team play, a recent match between Club Brugge and Royal Excel Mouscron would have been surrounded by empty seats if recycling organisation Recupel had not offered to fill the stands with old electronics.

This eye-catching campaign saw hundreds of pieces of discarded machinery – including fridges, microwaves, and screens – brought out to the stadium, likely replacing the cheers of fans with a few squeaks and bangs.

Beyond giving the players an audience, the goal of the stand takeover was to raise awareness of the need to recycle in Belgium.

“Our goal today is really to ask that every Belgian brings back their broken electronic device to a Recupel point,” explained a spokesperson for the company.

By taking over the stands, the company hoped to be able to draw attention to broken tech left in Belgian homes: all households in Belgium together have 51 million unused electrical appliances, of which 9 million are no longer being used because they are broken – enough to fill the seats of no less than 300 football stadiums.

According to a study by the company, every Belgian household has at least two broken electronic devices gathering dust.

This is perhaps better illustrated as around:

  • 386,000 broken laptops,
  • 213,000 lights,
  • 102,000 hedge clippers,
  • 103,000 irons,
  • 31,000 washing machines

“The more raw materials we recycle from electrical appliances, the less new raw materials we have to extract via the traditional, polluting mining industry,” explained CEO Eric Dewaet.

“By bringing these broken appliances to a Recupel point, you not only free up space, but you also do your bit for a better environment by giving a new life to your broken appliance.”

It’s unclear if the robotic looking fans will be hanging around for the next game at Jan Breydel stadium.

Jules Johnston
The Brussels Times

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