Plastic Recycling

One council area doing a fifth of Perth’s printer cartridge recycling

Almost one-fifth of the total printer cartridges recycled in the Perth metropolitan area in 2016 were recycled in the City of Cockburn area.

Residents and workers in the area recycled more than 23,000 cartridges through public buildings, retailers and offices for Cartridges 4 Planet Ark.

Mindarie Regional Council, City of Vincent, and City of South Perth made it into the national Top 10 for pure council collections, Belmont Forum into the 10 corporate collectors and Good Guys Geraldton into the top retailer category.

Such gongs, while a bit unsexy, are of vital importance when considering the program’s aim to slow the tide of 34 printer cartridges sent to landfill each minute in Australia, where they will take a staggering 450-1000 years to break down.


How HP blocked the use of cheap ink cartridges Printer ink and cartridges are complex products that represent serious investment, with printer ink regularly calculated as being one of the world’s most expensive liquids.

Once collected, Planet Ark sorts used cartridges and either returns them to manufacturers for remanufacturing, or Close the Loop collects them for dismantling into plastics, metals, toner and ink.

Aluminium, steel and up to six different types of plastic can be retrieved from used printer cartridges to make new products including cartridges, pens, rulers, eWood for park benches, fencing and garden beds.

The toner is also used in TonerPave, an asphalt additive that improves the performance and longevity of roads, and Tonerseal, a world-first spray seal binder for roads containing more than 20 per cent recycled waste toner and used tyre rubber.

Now 900 kilometres of road – the equivalent of driving from Perth to Carnarvon – have been paved using these products.The bags and ties from the collection boxes are also recycled.

To find a place to recycle your old cartridges, you can do a suburb search here and if your workplace uses more than three cartridges a month you can register for a free collection box.

WA recycled more than over 362,000 cartridges in total, making the state fourth overall in the national count ahead of South Australia, the Australian Capital Territory and Tasmania.


You may also like