*Photograph: Valerie O’Sullivan
In ten years, the amount of batteries collected in Clare is 15,300 times the height of the Cliffs of Moher.
This week, The European Recycling Platform (ERP), celebrated the ten-year anniversary of the EU Batteries Directive 2006/66/EC in Ireland. ERP has collected over 1,809 tonnes of batteries across all of its territories since the Directive was launched in 2008. The amount collected in Clare over the last 10 years is the equivalent of 1.25 times the length of the Wild Atlantic Way.
In 2012, European member states were tasked with achieving a collection rate of 25% of all waste portable batteries placed on the market. The target increased to 45% in 2016. ERP surpassed the 2017 EU target with a collection rate of 64%.
Encouraging people to recycle their batteries Karen Foley, Environmental Awareness Officer from Clare County Council said: “Recycling batteries is a great way to help protect the environment. Recycling enables us to retain as much of a product as possible put back into the market place for reuse in new products. It is about viewing waste as a valuable resource so that we can limit what we are taking from the environment to make new products and thus sustaining future generations.”
Commenting on ERP’s success surpassing the EU collection rate, Martin Tobin, CEO, said: “Since the launch of the EU Waste Battery Directive in September 2008, ERP has worked hard to establish a robust collection infrastructure and has created programmes like ‘Batteries for Barretstown’ to change the nation’s attitude towards recycling waste batteries. In the ten years since the Directive was launched, ERP has collected 1,809 tonnes of batteries which is the equivalent in weight to 92 million AA batteries, 45 Boeing 737s or 1,121 Irish rugby teams”