SPOKANE (Scrap Monster): According to media reports, Hong Kong’s modern e-waste recycling plant at Eco Park, 133 Lung Mun Road, Tuen Mun Area, is close to completion. ALBA Integrated Waste Solutions Hong Kong, responsible for building the state-of-the-art facility, had earlier announced that the plant will become operational by 2017. The ground breaking ceremony was held during the month of February last year.
In what is considered as the single largest order signed by it, ALBA had entered into a contract with the Hong Kong Environmental Protection Department to construct a most-modern e-waste recycling facility. As per contract, ALBA is supposed to provide e-waste collection and recycling services for a period of ten years, apart from being responsible for the construction of the plant. The project had received €65m aid from Chinese administration towards construction expenses and operational costs.
According to reports, the new Waste Electrical and Electronic Equipment Treatment and Recycling Facility (WEEETRF) is expected to have initial capacity to handle 30,000 tonnes of electronics waste per year, with the potential to handle up to 56,000 tonnes per annum at a later stage, if need arises. Rough estimates indicate that Honk Kong generates approximately 70,000 tonnes of waste electrical and electronic equipment (WEE) every year. Out of this nearly 80% are exported to facilities across Asia and Africa for further processing. The opening of the new facility will help the region to process much of its electronics waste locally, by reducing the heavy reliance on export of WEE. Further, it will provide new options for US recyclers to export their electronic waste.
Once operational, the new 30,000 square metres facility will serve as a model not only for the electronics recycling industry in Hong Kong, but also for the neighboring regions that presently lack adequate infrastructure facilities to responsibly handle electronic waste. The facility would be an important milestone in the development of Producers Responsibility Scheme (PRS) for WEE.
The facility, with 85% recovery rate will use ALBA’s proprietary state-of-the art techniques to process devices including televisions, computers, washing machines and air-conditioners in order to recover valuable secondary raw materials. The facility employs latest processing technology to handle hazardous materials including mercury and lead from cathode ray tubes and refrigerants, without causing any harm to environment. The project is carried out by the ALBA Group’s Hong Kong subsidiary, which owns the majority 73% share in the joint venture project. The recyclable collector Integrated Waste Solutions (IWS) holds 25% share, whereas the remaining 2% share is held by Germany-based recycling equipment manufacturer-Erdwich.
The company plans to set up at least four Regional Collection Centers (RCCs.) These RCCs will act as hubs for the collection and temporary storage of waste electrical and electronic equipment (WEEE) from nearby districts. The RCCs will co-operate with the Community Green Stations, Refuse Collection Points and other Government, NGO and private sector initiatives in WEEE collection. It will also support retailers and provide removal services.