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Dell: UK worst 'electrical recycler'

The UK recycles less electronics than the rest of Europe, according to a new survey.

Computer firm Dell researched the recycling habits of 5,000 consumers across, the UK (1,000 respondents), France, Germany, Italy and Spain. The firm hopes to address the issue of waste electrical and electronic equipment and get consumers to recycle more.

The findings showed more than 80 per cent of German consumers regularly recycle electronics compared to fewer than half of UK residents British consumers.

UK consumers are more likely to be influenced by the media than Government legislation such as the WEEE Directive when it comes to recycling and attitudes towards protecting the public.

But the survey also showed that the UK ties with Germany and regularly recycles more materials such as paper, plastics and glass, (more than 60 per cent) than the rest of Europe.

The survey focused on 17 questions relating to demographics, recycling habits and recycling attitudes.

Dell recycling manager Jean Cox-Kearns said: The research suggests different motivations behind recycling depending on sex, age and geography. It tells us that electronic manufacturers such as Dell need to adopt a more targeted approach in communicating the free technology recycling initiatives available and why its so important to get involved.

Other key findings include:
* The Welsh are the worst when it comes to recycling WEEE, with 17 per cent of respondents never having done so;
* A total of 54 per cent of respondents are concerned about the impact of waste in the environment compared to 46 per cent in the south east;
* British women recycle more than British men;
* A total of 60 per cent of respondents in Yorkshire and Humber had never heard of the WEEE Directive compared to 41 per cent of respondents in the south east.

Former Friends of the Earth director Tony Juniper said: These findings show a clear need to drive awareness with consumers around the mounting issue of e-waste and its serious implications to health and the environment. Already, we see positive champions at large across Europe so its now just a case of electronic manufacturers and governments in every country making the disposal of old electrical equipment as accessible and as commonplace as recycling old paper, plastics and glass.


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