A new student group on McMaster campus is seeking to initiate a battery recycling campaign.

Why Recycle Batteries?

In addition to the volume of landfill space that batteries could take up, they also contain toxic chemicals such as arsenic, brominated compounds, and lead. When discarded batteries are buried in landfills, in which case rainwater can leach the toxic materials out of the landfills. These toxic compounds can cause a range of human health effects, including damage to the nervous system, reproductive and developmental problem, even cancer.

Relatively few companies recycle household batteries due to varying market demand, lack of manufacturers’ support, and the high risks and costs associated with handling, storing and shipping batteries. For instance, alkaline batteries used in flashlights are readily recyclable by most steel mills; however, there is a significant concern over the possible presence of mercury.

Due to increased pressure to recycle household batteries, many programs are being developed and tested to recover the chemicals, metals and plastics in batteries. However, today, collection and recovery of household batteries is still in its infancy.

McMaster Battery Recycling Organization is a new working group of the Ontario Public Interest Research Group (OPIRG) McMaster. MAC BRO is advocating a sustainable programme to recycle batteries on campus.

Working Groups are volunteer groups of student and community members who take action on important social and environmental issues. Working Groups get funding and support from OPIRG McMaster.

MAC BRO is tabling in the MUSC foyer today (Thursday, October 5) – you can contact MAC BRO’s coordinator Jennifer Li at liy47@mcmaster.ca.


The Ontario Public Interest Research GroupOPIRG McMasterMcMaster University Student Centre Room 229Mailing Address: PO Box 1013, 1280 Main Street WestHamilton ON L8S 1C0Phone: 905-525-9140 ext. 27289E-Mail: opirg@mcmaster.caWeb: http://opirg.org/mcmasterBlog: http://opirgmcmaster.blogspot.com/Fax: 905-523-0107