Veolia launches vape recycling service in the UK
The waste management giant has announced a massive national collection program for Puffs and other used vape.
Last week, Veolia, a French multinational company specializing in water recycling, energy, and waste management, announced the launch of a massive recycling program to recover the 3 million vapes thrown away in the UK each week. The company intends to provide UK retailers who wish to do so with special containers in which disposable personal vaporizers or only used ones can be discarded.
They will then be collected on request, which will ensure “a safe recycling route,” in the words of Donald MacPhail, director of processing operations at Veolia UK. “vapes are thrown out twice a second. They may be called disposables, but they can and should be recycled,” he added.
Recycling them is expected to save more than 10 tons of lithium, which would result in a reduction in carbon emissions of about 72 tons since producing each ton of lithium from ore produces about nine tons of carbon dioxide. When lithium comes from the recycling of batteries rather than from the extraction and conversion of ore, the amount is significantly reduced. The resulting recovered metal should make about 1,200 batteries, especially for electric vehicles. Veolia ensures that each vape is disassembled to extract the precious materials it contains, such as lithium, nickel, and manganese.
This is not the first time Veolia has taken an interest in the vape industry. In North America, the company has already partnered with a major local company in an operation that made it possible to recycle 1.13 million kits, the equivalent of nine trucks with vape. Their recycling produced 32 tons of plastic, 19 tons of cable, 23 tons of batteries, the same number of battery chargers, 13 tons of electronic circuits, and about 500 kilograms of nicotine cartridges.
According to Veolia, 143 million vapes are discarded in the UK each year. Totally Wicked, an e-cigarette chain with 154 outlets across the territory, announced earlier that it had signed up for the program.