Getting involved in smaller and easier to manage projects can be very effective as most community groups can benefit greatly from raising their profile within their community. For little time and effort you can gently promote your name and message whilst offering a useful service.
Cricklade CAN! have kindly shared their experience of just such a project. They have set up a Battery Recycling Project and now Cricklade can boast over 3 times the average battery recycling rates.
Read about the experience in the Cricklade CAN! Case Study.
Interested in setting up a similar project in your area?
Why encourage battery recycling?
In the UK, only about three to five per cent of all household batteries are recycled. Some household batteries contain chemicals like lead, mercury or cadmium. If batteries are thrown into your normal rubbish bin, they are likely to end up in landfill. Once buried, the batteries start to break down and can leak some of these chemicals into the ground. This can cause soil and water pollution, which may be a health risk for humans.
Recycling stops batteries going to landfill and helps recover thousands of tonnes of metals, including valuable metals like nickel, cobalt and silver. This reduces the need to mine new materials, cutting CO2 emissions and saving resources.
Choosing your battery recycling supplier
Cricklade CAN! are using BatteryBack as their battery recycling service provider. BatteryBack are still offering the same service and can be contacted via their website. They also provided the following document about their service.
BatteryBack are not the only organisation offering battery collection service so it is always best practice to research other providers.
The approved schemes are:
- Budget Pack
- CCR Rebat
- DHL Battery Compliance
- ERP UK Ltd
- REPIC eBatt
Battery recycling general information
You can also take your batteries to your local Household Recycling Centre for more information about recycling facilities in Wiltshire visit Recycle for Wiltshire.
From February 2010, shops selling more than 32kg of batteries a year (approx 345 x four packs of batteries) have to provide battery recycling collection facilities in-store. If you want to report a shop for not having a battery recycling bin, contact the Vehicle Certification Agency (VCA) , who police the scheme.
It is advisable to join a registered battery recycling scheme for a number of important reasons.
A scheme will ensure you can comply with the ‘Duty of Care’ when storing batteries. If you are in possession, or have control of waste, you have a legal 'Duty of Care' to store it safely without causing pollution or harm and to only transfer it to someone who is legally allowed to take it. The Duty of Care applies to everyone who handles waste; from the person who produces the waste to the person who finally recycles or disposes of it. The Duty of Care is one of the main ways to combat flytipping.
If you move the collected batteries, for example if there are smaller collection buckets in shops but then you as a community group takes the smaller buckets and decants into a larger buckets, then you will need to consult the Environment Agency for advice on the need to have a waste carriers licenses. A battery scheme should go through this with you.
Cricklade CAN! successfully applied to their Area Board Community Grant Scheme. The Community Area Grants are specifically for charities, community group, town and parish councils looking to set up a community project in Wiltshire.
For more information about the Community Area Grant scheme please click here.
A copy of the successful application is available here.
It is strongly recommend you liaise with your community area manager before applying who can give you help and advice. You can find a list of Area Boards and Managers here.
Additional funding opportunities can be found on the WWCN funding pages.
Making the most of the scheme
Often schemes can supply posters and promotional materials. Ensure that on any posters and collection points you include your group’s details. You can then ensure your group’s name (and logo if you have one) becomes familiar with your wider community and they associate it with a helpful and practical project - this builds trust. You then are known and trusted when you embark on future projects.
Do you want to get started?