With the support of the Outdoors Industries Association (OIA), GP Batteries has launched a new campaign, Recharge the Outdoors, to challenge both retailers and consumers to switch to eco-friendly rechargeable batteries and recycle single-use disposable batteries in a bid to reduce the 600 million batteries thrown away* in the UK every year.
Over 20,000 tonnes of batteries are thrown away and sent to landfill sites in the UK each year*. When batteries end up in landfill, the heavy metals in them can turn toxic and seep into the environment. Switching to a rechargeable battery such as GP Batteries’ ReCyko+ Pro will significantly reduce the environmental damage generated by discarded disposable batteries. GP’s ReCyko+ Pro can be recharged up to 1,500 times; meaning for each battery used, 1,500 less single- use disposable batteries will have to be used and recycled or sent to landfill.
James Tuck, Marketing Manager for GP Batteries (UK) Ltd, said: “The outdoor enthusiast is by nature, a more eco-conscious consumer. However, with over half the UK population still not knowing that all batteries can be recycled once they reach their end-of-life, there needs to be greater education on the environmental impact of discarded batteries and what they can do about it. This campaign will hopefully raise awareness of battery usage, the importance of recycling old batteries and urge consumers to switch to rechargeable ones; but we need retailers to help us achieve this.
“We would like retailers to commit to only selling rechargeable batteries on the basis that they are better for the environment and we wish for them to actively communicate this message to their customers as well as encourage battery recycling. This is the outdoor industry’s opportunity to lead the way to a future of a more environmentally-friendly battery being the standard, not just an option!”
On backing the campaign, Chief Executive of the OIA, Andrew Denton, said: “I was shocked to learn about the environmental impact of disposable batteries – it isn’t something that has been in the outdoor trade’s mind in recent years, however it seems it has the potential to be a huge issue and the effect of the tens of thousands of tonnes of discarded batteries in the UK each year is something that we need to change. We understand that the UK missed it’s set target for battery recycling again last year and we thought as an industry committed to a sustainable future, the outdoor industry should be at the forefront of that change.
“While it would be fantastic to start by recycling existing single-use batteries, the ultimate objective is to get everyone to switch to rechargeable batteries, and this could really start at retailer level.
“By committing to only selling rechargeable batteries, retailers will be able to really push the message to their customers – save money, save the planet – only buy rechargeable batteries! The whole industry could get on board with this important initiative and then the outdoor trade would be leading by example. I hope the OIA can support the trade and that we can facilitate a real positive change on the impact of batteries on the environment and the outdoors!”