Why Recycle Printer Cartridges - 5 Compelling Reasons
By Simon Williams - 15th Apr 2020

Despite the growing emphasis on going paperless, it is estimated that over 20 million printer cartridges are sold across Australia each year. With 70% of all printer cartridges ending up in landfill and taking up to 1000 years to completely decompose, they are not exactly mother nature's best friend. Should we continue down this path, we can say goodbye to the beautiful world that once was.

It’s taken a long time for our society to recognise the importance of recycling waste, however, the force is now stronger than ever before. Responsible waste initiatives are now more available for almost every non-compostable technology and printer cartridges are no different. Most Original Printer Cartridge manufacturers, the same ones as made the printer, actively support zero-waste recycling of their empty Printer Cartridges. One Online Retailer has even made the unique stop of launching a free Home Collection Service to their customers to collect the products they have sold so they can be reapplied to new uses.

CartridgesDirect Free Home Collection Service

It’s never been easier to recycle your used printer cartridges, with our CartridgesDirect Free Home Collection services. This program is the first of its kind, and came from our team noticing a gap in the market for those offices and homes who use less than 3 toner cartridges and are thus not eligible for a free collection box. Next time you order your cartridges through CartridgesDirect, a recycling satchel will arrive with your order so that you can deposit your used cartridges inside and drop them to your nearest Australia Post roadside box. If you're not sold, let's take a look at why you should recycle empty printer cartridges.

Why Recycle Printer Cartridges?

When it comes to 'why recycle printer cartridges', the facts are pretty damning. With over 70% of all printer cartridges throughout Australia ending up in landfill each year, efforts from everybody must be amplified. That's approximately 14 million cartridges each year littered across our earth and ocean. In addition to this, despite improvements, should all of our efforts not increase, we are looking at the following damages:

  • More plastic than fish in our oceans by 2050 - WEF
  • Up to 3 pints of oil used to manufacture one toner cartridge.
  • 862 million kgs of CO2 emissions each year.

We all have a collective responsibility, both as individuals and as companies, to look after our environment. Like most, you may not even realise the impact that some of your actions are having on mother nature; especially when it comes to getting rid of your waste. However, the facts are clear and it's up to organisations to educate the world on what can be done. Here are 5 more compelling reasons why you should recycle empty cartridges.

1. Environmental Benefits

Of course, the primary reason for why you should recycle printer cartridges is to help the environment. Nearly everything that we throw away ends up in a landfill, which slowly begins to overfill; damaging our surroundings. It’s become a bigger issue as people continue to throw away things that could be otherwise recycled! On average, Australians throw away the equivalent of 5000 tonnes of material each year.

Phew, that's a lot.

By recycling empty printer cartridges, you are diverting waste away from landfill and sending it to a more useful place. In addition to this, recycled printer cartridges also help to recover potential resources. The materials used to make printer cartridges can be reused, and other recycled materials can be used to help create cartridges in the first place! It's the circle of life.

2. Future Innovation 

Printer cartridges are made using unique, and often virgin, resources. Therefore, it’s critical that these find their way back into the production line. By 2030, HP is hoping to be producing print technology that is 30% recycled goods, and they have done well to prove that this is no pipedream. We have also seen a number of state and local governments in Australia build roads using recycled printer cartridges. So, it’s safe to say that innovation exists in this space if consumers are willing to commit to a recycled future.

3. Conserve Natural Resources 

Recycling printer cartridges will also help to reduce our consumption of non-renewable resources. Printer cartridges require manufacturing with oil and we all know that oil is not exactly in abundance. When you think about how much natural resource is used to manufacture new products each day, this is a significant number. With 97% of the materials used to make printer cartridges recyclable, our waste can have a huge impact on the environment. It's important that we do all we can to help. When you recycle your used printer carriages through our CartridgesDirect Free Home Collection service, the precious metals and minerals that make up your cartridges are being preserved and redeployed for new printer cartridges.

4. Economic Benefits

In addition to protecting our land and natural resources, there are also economic benefits from recycling goods. In fact, recycling is an incredibly powerful tool for growing an economy. By recycling materials through preferred channels, you are helping the government to save money and time. This means that your local government will have more resources to work on other pressing issues. It literally closes the loop on a products’ life cycle and provides a sustainable economy for everyone.

5. Public Relations 

Sometimes, people need something in return before giving back. According to an article by Harvard Business Review, over 90% of sustainably marketed products grew faster than conventional counterparts. This means that by being a green organisation, you are likely to grow quickly. Of course, everybody wants to be seen doing the right thing. But what if you were to actually do the right thing? Now, there's a thought.

What To Do With Empty Cartridges?

If you want to learn more about what to do with empty cartridges, we have a full article on how to recycle printer cartridges which you can read. However, in summary, there are 5 realistic options for you to dispose of your printer cartridges with ease. Take a look at our shortlist on what to do with empty cartridges below:

  • Drop off at your nearest Australia Post free.
  • Join our free cartridge recycling program.

Each option will not only reduce the number of cartridges that end up in landfill but also be processed through preferred channels. It's all too easy to throw waste into your nearest bin and we encourage you to start thinking about where this ends up. We're confident that as time progresses, there will be simplified options to recycle absolutely almost every technology we consume. If you have any questions about why you should recycle ink cartridges or would like to find out more about our free printer cartridge recycling program, feel free to hit us up in the comments or send us a message via live chat. We would be more than happy to assist you in the fight for a greener world.

Explore Popular Articles