Printer vendors are supporting a new recycling and remanufacturing program launched by Planet Ark in the hope of reducing printer cartridge waste.
Canon, Brother, HP, Lexmark, Epson and Panasonic are sponsoring the program and covering the cost of collecting and recycling the cartridges, in a deal worth $400,000.
Australians used more than 18 million printer, fax and copier cartridges last year, generating in excess of 5000 tonnes of waste.
Planet Ark founder, Jon Dee, said the backbone of the initiative was a new Australian invention called The Green Machine.
“This machine recycles every little bit of an ink or laser cartridge, ensuring that nothing is sent to landfill from the cartridges collected for recycling,” he said.
Used cartridges can now be taken to boxes at more than 2300 Australia Post and Harvey Norman outlets.
Dee told ARN that Planet Ark aimed to reduce the amount of cartridges that end up in landfill to 5 per cent.
“What we [Planet Ark] need to do as much as possible is to remanufacture the cartridges, and if that isn’t possible, recycle them,” he said. “Our main aim is to stop chemicals from the products being placed into landfill.”
All cartridges collected will be returned to the recycling centre where they will be sorted and processed. This free service is available to all businesses, organisations, educational institutions, government departments and other offices that use relatively large quantities of toner and inkjet cartridges.
Businesses can become a program participant and have a collection box placed in their offices or buildings.