By recycling electrical and electronic equipment, Czechs save enough water to brew 680,000 barrels of beer.
Czech citizens handed over for recycling 11,186 tonnes of end-of-life television sets and PC monitors and 4,504 tonnes of small electrical and electronic equipment. Although it is difficult to imagine, people thereby saved 193,000 MWh of electricity and 850 million litres of water. The calculations ensue from the most recent analysis of the environmental audit by the ASEKOL not-for-profit organisation, which works in take-back of discarded electrical appliances.
“The efforts of the inhabitants of the Czech Republic to recycle old and no longer used electrical and electronic equipment pays off. Last year, people saved 850 million litres of water by handing over television sets, monitors and small electronics. That corresponds to the entire country’s consumption for 40 days. The same amount of water can be used to make approximately 680,000 barrels of beer, which could last an incredible 236 years for the average Czech,” notes Kristina Mikulová, communications manager at ASEKOL. At the same time, 193,000 MWh of electricity and more than 9 million litres of oil were saved.
The not-for-profit ASEKOL organisation prepares an environmental audit each year. These LCA (Life Cycle Assessments) evaluate the influences of collection, transportation and processing of electrical and electronic equipment. ASEKOL then converts the results into savings of electricity, raw materials and water, as well as into greenhouse gas emissions and waste production. According to ASEKOL data, in Czech households there are today approximately 600,000 decommissioned CRT television sets and 400,000 unused PC monitors. If all of these could be handed over for recycling, this would save 779 million litres of water, which is the Czech Republic’s consumption for five weeks.
Results of the 2013 assessment clearly indicate that by recycling people can do their part to save resources that are starting to become scarce in the world. Last year, citizens handed over for recycling almost 15,690 tonnes of electrical and electronic equipment. Crude oil savings in relation to that came to 9.4 million litres, which amount would take an airliner on four trips around the equator. The electricity saved could run the entire Czech Republic for a day and a half.
“We are happy that Czech citizens are interested in the environment and try to actively participate in its protection. Every appliance they hand over for recycling represents a saving. For example, the recycling of 10 television sets saves enough water to supply a typical citizen for 3 months,” adds Kristina Mikulová.
ASEKOL also calculated how many kg of the greenhouse gas CO2 per inhabitant the regions managed to save. In the regional comparison, the inhabitants of Prague performed best. By recycling e-waste, they decrease the production of CO2 by 5.64 kg per citizen last year. The Vysočina Region placed second and Zlín Region third.
Environmental benefits of collecting and recycling television sets, monitors and small electrical equipment (EEE) in the Czech Republic during 2013
|TVs + Monitors||Small EEE||Total|
|Kg collected in 2013||11,186,423||4,504,475||15,690,898|
|Electricity savings (MWh)||83,856||109,233||193,089|
|Crude oil savings (l)||1,624,216||7,760,309||9,384,525|
|Primary materials savings (t)||5,514||2,027||7,541|
|Water savings (m3)||433,408||417,114||850,522|
|Decrease in hazardous waste production (t)||82,066||86,486||168,552|
|Decrease in CO2 production (t CO2 equiv.)||22,454||20,090||42,544|
Reduction in greenhouse gases due to separated televisions, monitors and small electrical appliances by the individual regions of the Czech Republic during 2013
|Region||Number of collected TV + PC monitors (pcs)||Weight of collected TV + PC monitors (kg)||Weight of collected small EEE (kg)||Reduction in greenhouse gas emissions (t CO2 equiv.)||Reduction in greenhouse gas production per inhabitant (kg CO2 equiv.)|
|City of Prague||75,656||1,492,982||672,990||6072||4,9|
|South Bohemian Region||33,453||648,920||306,887||2726||4,3|
|South Moravian Region||61,915||1,257,873||536,068||4903||4,2|
|Central Bohemian Region||63,147||1,271,616||602,447||5249||4,0|
|Hradec Králové Region||23,101||462,508||283,334||2201||4,0|
|Ústí nad Labem Region||29,486||619,194||207,824||2123||2,8|
|Karlovy Vary Region||10,353||235,932||85,321||801||2,7|
ASEKOL a.s., is a not-for-profit company which has been operating a compliance scheme for take-back of electrical and electronic equipment since 2005. According to a registry maintained at the Ministry of the Environment of the Czech Republic it provides take-back of EEE in the areas of information, telecommunication and office technology, consumer electronics, tools, toys, leisure and sport equipment, monitoring and control instruments and automatic dispensers (i.e. groups 3, 4, 6, 7, 8, 9 and 10). ASEKOL has concluded contracts on establishing take-back points with more than 4,250 cities and municipalities and 2,600 electronics points of sale and service. Thousands of other collection points were started up through developing and installing various types of containers for small electrical appliances. Operating through its more than 15,000 collection points has given ASEKOL the densest collection network for discarded electrical and electronic equipment of all compliance schemes not only in the Czech Republic but also in Europe. In 2013, ASEKOL collected an average 1.49 kg of e-waste per Czech citizen.