Global eWaste exceeded 50 million Tonnes in 20181 and only
15-20% of eWaste was recycled.
It is estimated that globally more than 80% of eWaste is dumped illegally2
eWaste contains hundreds of highly toxic substances including Lead, Mercury, Arsenic, Cadmium, Chromium, Selenium, flame retardants etc and, when leached into the water table are dangerous to both human and animal health.
eWaste is one of the fastest growing waste streams globally with Australia generating the highest amount of eWaste per capita in the world. The average Australian household creates over 73 kgs3 of eWaste per year.
The most common hazardous electronic items include LCD desktop monitors, LCD televisions, Plasma Televisions, TVs and computers with Cathode Ray Tubes.
There are over 30 million mobile phone accounts in Australia (1.3 times our population). The average cell phone user replaces their device every 18 months with each household having at least five unused phones.
Australians buy more than 4 million computers and 3 million televisions annually. Over 1.5 million TV’s are discarded each year and less than 10% of computers are recycled.
According to the UN Environment Programme (UNEP), much of the world’s eWaste ends up in Asian or African landfills where it is buried or burnt after the precious metals are extracted.
There is 100 times more gold in a tonne of e-waste than in a tonne of gold ore4.