Did you know that it’s dangerous to just throw batteries away? In fact, wrongly binned batteries can cause a fire. In Brisbane, eight City Council garbage bins have caught fire since July and the alleged causes are improperly disposed batteries. Here’s how and where to do that in West End.
Lord Mayor Adrian Schrinner revealed 225 tonnes of batteries were wrongly sent to landfill last year, risking fire danger to homes, rubbish collection trucks and waste and recycling facilities. Because of this, he warned Brisbane residents to check their bins before disposal.
If you’re wondering where and how to dispose of your old batteries, read on for our battery trash safety guide:
Bring your batteries to a recycling center
In West End, the nearest battery recycling facility is in ALDI, located at 335 Montague Road. They accept both rechargeable and single-use batteries. All you need to do is remove any packaging from used household batteries, drop them into the recycling bin, and you’re done.
The batteries are collected by ALDI’s specialist recycling partner, sorted into chemical types and returned to recycling plants who extract relevant materials for reuse.
Do note that only AA, AAA, C, D and 9V batteries are accepted at ALDI West End. If you wish to dispose of other battery sizes including coincell, lantern batteries and mobile phone batteries, visit Battery Recycling – Planet Ark Recycling Near You.
Never disassemble or crush batteries
Residual charge from batteries can heat up and eventually cause chemical leaks, explosions, or fires. Not only that, but the chemicals in batteries may be toxic to the environment and potentially harm wildlife and affect surrounding soil or waterways.
City Standards, Community Health and Safety Chair Kim Marx said: “Disposing batteries responsibly is easy and you can start by safely storing them in a box or container at home and bringing them with you next time you visit your local resource recovery centre.”
Know Your Battery Types
Lastly, it helps to know about the different battery types because each of them comes with different handling instructions. When you’re aware of your battery type, it will be easier to determine the appropriate disposal method.
Gavin Fox, State Operations Manager of Visy Recycling Queensland said lithium batteries are the main cause of fires in their processing machines and lead acid batteries expose their workers to potential acid burns and injuries.
Lithium-ion batteries are among the different types of rechargeable batteries and they are found in most portable devices such as cellphones and laptops. Lead acid batteries, on the other hand, are like the ones found in cars. They are considered hazardous waste and must be taken to recycling centers.
“All kinds of batteries end up recycle bins and end up at Visy’s Gibson Island recycling facility, but lithium batteries and lead acid car batteries in particular pose the most risk to staff and operations,” Mr Fox said.