When your refrigerator fails on you it can be tempting to just dump it by the curb, or throw it in a skip and forget it ever existed. After all, what use is it to you now if it can’t keep those beers cool or your ice cream from melting? However, with electronic or e-waste now one of the fastest growing types of waste in Australia, a better option would be to recycle your old refrigerator rather than dump it.
In the UK, around 2.5 million refrigerators are thrown away each year. Why is that bad? Here are the facts.
Hazardous to Children
The most obvious concern is suffocation. Although fridges are safer these days, very young children with adventurous minds may find that refrigerator by the road an inviting prospect. Not only that, but dumped freezers and fridges can leak dangerous chemicals that might harm anyone coming into contact with them. Keep your old refrigerator stored in your yard, or garage until you can arrange for it to be picked up by a professional.
Illegal dumping is turning some of Australia’s natural beauty spots into eyesores. Blacks Beach in Queensland for example, has become a local dumping ground for white goods, fuel tanks, old furniture and all kinds of unwanted household waste. Dumped rubbish attracts more of the same. Avoid dumping grounds like these.
Refrigerant Inhalant Abuse
Some youngsters between the ages of 10-16 both abroad and in Australia seek to get high through chroming (inhalant abuse), and do so by abusing substances such as lighter fluids, spray paint, hairspray and even refrigerants (substances used to cool fridges). Keep old refrigerators off the streets.
Massive Costs to Ratepayers
Illegally dumped waste costs ratepayers half a million dollars per year in Australia, due to the cost of cleaning up the dumped waste.
Global Dumping Epidemic
In 2014, 41.8 million tons of e-waste was dumped globally. Most of that e-waste consisted of household appliances like fridges and washing machines. The world doesn’t need anymore discarded fridges. Dispose of your old refrigerators responsibly.
Take care of your environment and the people in it. There are numerous safe ways to dispose of your old refrigerator. You can call your local council and ask them about their disposal options. Most councils will pick up your old refrigerator and cart it off to the dump for you. There are also a number of recycling programs that you can take advantage of.