Portugal launches CD and DVD recycling scheme

A national recycling scheme for CDs and DVDs was launched by a coalition of voluntary, public and private sector organisations in Portugal on Tuesday. The scheme will use the office network and vehicle fleet of the postal firm Chronopost to allow individuals and companies to recycle used discs free of charge. Additional drop-off points at supermarkets and waste collection centres will be available shortly.

The Portuguese government has exempted Chronopost’s vehicles from waste transport rules to allow it to carry the discs. The company will give any revenue from recycling the polycarbonate plastic in the discs to forestry regeneration projects. The crushed plastic will initially be sent abroad for recycling but domestic recycling could become economically viable if other polycarbonates, for example, from end-of-life vehicles are included, says the NGO Quercus, which originally suggested the scheme.

Collection costs have prevented comparable collection systems from operating in other EU countries, says the NGO’s spokesman Pedro Carteiro. “This scheme involves negligible additional costs and has no environmental footprint.”

This is the first recycling scheme for CDs and DVDs in Portugal. There is no data on the quantity of discs currently being landfilled. Collection schemes and recycling are also patchy in other member states.


Excerpted from ENDS Europe Daily