Approximately 40%4 of all drivers dropping equipment off on eDay were asked to complete a short questionnaire (Appendix 2). The results are summarised below.
eDay is promoted as a “cars only” event for households, community groups, schools and small businesses. Business users in general have more options for recycling their computer equipment. Furthermore, eDay involves a large number of volunteers, who might not be so prepared to give up their time for a business recycling event.
The survey results below confirm that eDay reached the target market with 82% of the equipment dropped off coming from households, which was almost identical with eDay 2007 (81%). The percentage of equipment coming from business was 15%, again, almost identical with 2007 (16%).
Figure 3: Computer use
Where were the computer products you brough in today last used?
The pie graph shows responses to the survey question “Where were the computer products you brought in today last used?” 82% came from households, 15% from businesses, 2% from schools, 1% from community and <1% from government.
Reason for recycling
Drivers were asked why they brought their e-waste to an eDay drop-off site. The purpose of the question was to understand user awareness of the need to recycle electronic waste. Thirty-three per cent of respondents indicated a key motivation was their understanding that e-waste collected on eDay is properly recycled.
Figure 4: Reason for bringing equipment to eDay
The pie graph shows responses to the survey question “Why did you bring your computer equipment along today?” Of the respondents surveyed, the following answers were given, in order of size: it is going to be recycled 33%, I need the space 26%, I know it’s not right to dump in the landfill 19%, it is free 11%, I don’t know where else to take it 11%.
People dropping off equipment were asked to comment on the choices they had if there was no eDay. Nearly half (48%) indicated they would continue to store it, but nearly one third (32%) said they would take it to a landfill or add to their other household rubbish. This suggests that over 300 tonnes of computer equipment would have been dumped in landfills if eDay 2008 had not been held.
Figure 5: Disposal options
The pie graph shows responses to the survey question “What would you do with your old equipment if you could not bring it along to eDay?” Of the respondents surveyed, the following answers were given, in order of size: store it 48%, take it to landfill 26%, take it to a recycling centre 14%, put it in household rubbish 6%, give it away to a friend or charity 6%.
Fifty-eight per cent of respondents indicated that collection events like eDay were their preferred method for disposing of e-waste. This contrasts with only 39% who identified this as their preferred option in 2007. In 2007, most (42%) preferred to take their e-waste to a recycling centre, compared with just 26% in 2008. This suggests that even when recycling options become more available, there could be an ongoing role for eDay to raise awareness and create the motivation for communities to empty out their garages and cupboards.
Figure 6: Recycling preferences
How would you prefer to recycle your ewaste?
The pie graph sows responses to the survey question “How would you prefer to recycle your e-waste?” Of the respondents surveyed, the following answers were given, in order of size: collection events like eDay 58%, take it to a recycling centre 26%, take it to a local charity for reuse 9%, take it to a computer retailer 4%, ship it back to the manufacturer 3%.
Other electronic waste
Responses to the question about “other electronic waste” indicated that everyone dropping off computer e-waste had at least one other item of electronic waste for recycling, including TVs, stereos, batteries and electronic appliances.
Figure 7: Other electronic waste
What other ewaste do you have that you would like to recycle?
The bar graph shows responses to the survey question “What other e-waste do you have at home that you would like to recycle?” Respondents could choose as many answers as applied. Of the respondents surveyed, the following answers were given, in order of size: TVs 30%, stereo equipment 25%, small appliances 25%, batteries 18%, large appliances 16%.
Information about how the eDay materials were to be recycled was published on the website and distributed in various media releases. For the most part, this message was received and understood. Only 2% thought the equipment would be sent to a landfill.
Figure 8: Recycling awareness
What do you think happens to the equipment after it is collected today?
The pie graph shows responses to the survey question “What do you think happens to the equipment after it is collected today?” Of the respondents surveyed, the following answers were given, in order of size: 46% recycled in another country 46%, recycled in New Zealand 27%, valuable metals would be extracted 19%, equipment would be resold 6%, sent to landfill 2%.
Understanding of risks
Respondents demonstrated a good understanding of why e-waste should be kept out of landfills, with only 3% replying “don’t know”.
Figure 9: Understanding of risks
Why do you think it is important to keep e-waste out of landfills?
The bar graph shows responses to the survey question “Why do you think it is important to keep e-waste out of landfills?” Respondents could choose as many answers as applied. Of the respondents surveyed, the following answers were given, in order of size: it contains hazardous substances that can leach into waterways 51%, dangerous to human and animal health 20%, waste of precious metals such as copper and gold 16%, fill up landfills too fast 14%, don’t know 3%.
Drivers were asked how they found out about eDay. Over 50% (52%) indicated they found out from their daily or community newspaper (slightly less than the 58% in 2007). Twenty-one per cent heard about eDay by radio (up from 12% in 2007). While other media (posters, banners, TV, email, websites) had much less impact they nevertheless did help in reaching around 13%.
Figure 10: Media impact
How did you hear about this computer collection event?
The pie graph shows responses to the survey question “How did you hear about this computer collection event?” Of the respondents surveyed, the following answers were given, in order of size: daily newspaper 33%, radio 21%, community newspaper 19%, friend/relative 7%, internet website 6%, council newsletter 4%, newsletter/flyer 3%, email 3%, TV 2%, street banner 1%, eDay poster 1%, MfE less than 1%
4 The 2008 driver questionnaire include eight questions, an increase from the six used in previous years. This created difficulties at the drop-off areas, as equipment could be unloaded much more quickly than the time required to interview the driver. As a result, volunteers at many of the busier sites were unable to survey all drivers. However, the 40% sample is considered to be more than adequate to provide useful results.