WEEE collection and CRM recovery trials: piloting a holistic approach for Scotland

Andrew Hursthouse, Steven Kelly, William McPherson, Brian Menzies, Mojtaba Mirzaeian, Donna Wood

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution

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Abstract

Re-Tek UK and its partners, Enscape Consulting and the University of West of Scotland commenced trials for the collection and recovery of critical raw materials from waste electrical and electronic (WEEE) products in July 2016. Sponsored by WRAP CRM (Life funded) the trials are aimed at boosting the recovery of critical raw materials (CRMs) from household waste electrical and electronic products (WEEE) and Information Communications Technology (ICT) in particular, after functioning equipment is separated out for re-use. The new collection models provide residents with the opportunity to drop-off unwanted electrical and electronic appliances at a time and place that suits them, through a collaborative approach which encourages local authorities, educational establishments, businesses, and Social Enterprises etc to act as hub sites. Hubs are designed to minimize product damage and encourage drop -off, rather than hoarding. Extraction methods developed after the collection phase of the trial will advance the opportunity to recover Cobalt, Gold and Silver from ICT products, with the potential to inform how a more sustainable supply chain could be developed in Scotland. These are based on bioleaching and electrochemical recovery using novel carbon based electrode systems, with an assessment of pilot performance and scale up challenges. We report on progress to contribute to an EU Life project covering pilot studies across Europe to provide definitive data on practical solutions to WEEE and CRM recovery.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationCEST 2017 15th International Conference on Environmental Science and Technology
Subtitle of host publicationRhodes, Greece, 31 August to 2 September 2017
PublisherGlobal Network on Environmental Science and Technology
Number of pages3
Publication statusPublished - Sep 2017

Keywords

  • critical raw materials
  • bioleaching
  • electrochemical recovery
  • electronic equipment collection
  • WEEE
  • hub sites
  • gold
  • Silver
  • cobalt

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  • Activities

    • 1 Participation in workshop, seminar, course

    COST ReCreew Workshop

    Andrew Hursthouse (Chair), , Iain McLellan (Organiser), & Jan Miller (Organiser)

    22 Feb 2018

    Activity: Participating in or organising an eventParticipation in workshop, seminar, course

    Cite this

    Hursthouse, A., Kelly, S., McPherson, W., Menzies, B., Mirzaeian, M., & Wood, D. (2017). WEEE collection and CRM recovery trials: piloting a holistic approach for Scotland. In CEST 2017 15th International Conference on Environmental Science and Technology: Rhodes, Greece, 31 August to 2 September 2017 [CEST2017_00] Global Network on Environmental Science and Technology. https://cest.gnest.org/group/2261/proceedings