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Japan Recycles 27.7 Million Appliances in 2010, Up 47%
Jun 10, 2011
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Approximately 27.70 million appliances were collected in Japan in fiscal year 2010 under the guidelines of the Home Appliances Recycling Law, according to Japan's Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry (METI). The total represents an increase of 47.4% over 2009.

The Home Appliances Recycling Law designates four types of home appliances required to disposed of at specified collection sites. The results by appliance type:
• Air-conditioners: 3.14 million units collected (about 11% of the total)
• CRT TVs: 17.37 million units collected (63% of the total)
• LCD and plasma TVs: 650,000 units collected (3% of the total)
• refrigerators and freezers: 3.40 million units collected (12% of the total)
• clothes washers and dryers 3.14 million units collected (11% of the total)

Comparing collection totals by appliance category, METI reported that:
• 45.9% more air-conditioners were collected in 2010 than in 2009
• 68.3% more CRT TVs were collected
• 200.0% more LCD and plasma TVs were collected
• 13.1% more refrigerators and freezers were collected
• 1.6% more clothes washers and dryers were collected

The collected appliances were transported to home appliance recycling plants and underwent a recycling process to recover materials such as iron, copper, aluminum, glass, and plastic. Refrigerants used in air-conditioners, refrigerators/freezers, and laundry appliances, as well as the foam blowing agents contained in refrigerator/freezers insulation, were recovered and destroyed, METI reported.

The amount of refrigerants recovered was 1,855 tons from air-conditioners, 353 tons from refrigerators and freezers, and 1 ton from laundry appliances; approximately 563 tons of foam blowing agents were recovered from refrigerator/freezer insulation.

METI said all appliance manufacturers and importers achieved 2010 recycling rates above the legal requirements. The recycling rates were:

• air-conditioners: 88% were recycled (against a legal requirement of 70%)
• CRT TVs: 85% recycled (against a requirement of 55%)
• LCD and plasma TVs: 79% recycled (against a requirement of 50%)
• refrigerators and freezers: 76% recycled (against a requirement of 60%)
• clothes washer and dryers: 86% (against a requirement of 65%)

Compared to 2009 results, the recycling rate was unchanged for air-conditioners, declined 1% for CRT TVs, increased 5% for LCD and plasma TVs, increased 1% for refrigerators and freezers, and increased 1% for clothes washers and dryers.

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