About 90% of fires at recycling sorting centers in Quebec are caused by e-waste containing lithium batteries, according to a recent analysis by Ricova, which transports and collects residual and recyclable materials.
The company, which collects waste from private companies as well as from several municipalities in Quebec, is crying out from the heart and calling for these batteries and other combustible products not to be put in recycling bins. She believes that concrete measures must be taken to protect the health and safety of staff and facilities in the county.
We must therefore educate the population to facilitate the safe recovery of lithium batteries, which do not go into the blue trash. Despite training and prevention, fires have been steadily increasing in recent years. It’s very difficult to prevent, especially since the huge access to lithium batteries in recycling bins, Dominic Colobiale, Recova’s Chairman and CEO, said in a statement Friday.
According to the report, 10 years ago, sorting centers in Quebec could have experienced 1-2 fires per year, on average, while today there are 4 to 8 fires per year.
We read that the presence of e-waste among flammable materials “poses a clear danger”. This is because lithium batteries ignite when crushed, punctured, or exposed to water during assembly and processing. It comes into direct contact with tons of recyclable combustible materials, such as paper and cardboard.
“Removing the hazards at the source is the simplest and most effective solution, because it is impossible for the sorting centers to be able to remove all the hazardous materials, due to the speed and complexity of the operational processes,” added Mr. Kolopriali. .
Rekova believes that it is necessary to educate the population about this problem and facilitate the recovery of batteries and other electronic waste for citizens “otherwise the fires caused by these things will only increase.”
The report also recommended affixing a label to all recycling bins stating that hazardous materials are prohibited from being deposited in them. Finally, producers of hazardous materials must be involved in the management of these products.
We read: “Manufacturers of these batteries must be responsible and accountable for demonstrating the risks of their products and actively participating in the recovery of their waste.”