Separate collection of electrical and electronic scrap
Electrical and electronic appliances largely consist of metal, plastic and glass components. From an ecological point of view, recycling these materials makes good sense because their multiple re-use means reducing the consumption of resources. Furthermore, professional disposal prevents pollutants such as those contained in batteries and accumulators, capacitors and cooling appliances from entering the environment.
The quantities of collected electrical and electronic appliances initially rose steadily in the first few years of this century, but in the past seven years they have stabilised at around 15 kilograms per capita. This is due in part to improved collection services provided by retailers and municipalities. The sector has introduced a voluntary financing system involving a prepaid recycling fee and this has proven to be a successful move. Under this system, consumers can return equipment at collection points free of charge.
The EU’s specified target for the collection of electrical and electronic scrap from private households is 4 kilograms per capita. With an average of 15 kilograms per capita, Switzerland is currently well above this level.
The SENS Foundation and SWICO (Swiss ICT Association) conduct annual surveys of the quantities of electrical and electronic equipment collected in Switzerland and consigned to recovery from household, construction, gardening and hobby activities (SENS) and from the office and consumer electronics sector (SWICO). The Federal Statistical Office FSO surveys the permanent resident population number. The indicator is the quotient of these two figures.