WA e-waste ban misses vapes

WA’s much needed ban on e-waste to landfill commenced from Monday this week, but unfortunately, vapes were excluded from that ban.

Mark Zihrul from TEC commented earlier today: “This is short sighted of the WA government. We all know the havoc these items can cause in waste streams, let alone the risk they represent to the environment. Just over a year ago, the Federal Environment Minister Ms Tanya Plibersek, was quoted saying:

“Every vape that goes into landfill dumps plastic, poisons, nicotine salts, heavy metals, lead, mercury, and flammable lithium-ion batteries into the environment that can take hundreds of years to degrade.”[1]

Mark continued: “Vapes contain lithium-ion batteries, which represent a significant fire and explosion risk in the waste and recycling stream. We call on WA to reconsider the vape exemption, and implement a comprehensive ban on e-waste to landfill”  

You can read more about the hazard of embedded batteries in our previous report on the Batteries Crisis, available here.

[1] Belot H (2023)  Environment groups call for urgent action on hazardous waste from e-cigarettes; Guardian Australia. 13 February 2023. Available online:  https://www.theguardian.com/australia-news/2023/feb/13/environment-groups-call-for-urgent-action-on-hazardous-waste-from-e-cigarettes

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