Cables and Wire Recycling

Cable and Wires

We are all using cables daily, we replace them, have spares and get new cables with most new electronic items purchased. The global wires and cables market is projected to be worth $200 billion in 2022 and grow to $294 billion in 2029. Source: Fortune Business Insights. From these figures alone we can see electrical, and electronic cable is a growth area.

Today, recycling and recovery of valuable metals from all sorts of waste equipment including electrical and electronic items is a normal enough occurrence. We are all familiar with recycling and recycling centres and the need to segregate electrical equipment including cables from other types of household or office equipment for recycling.

Some of the main reasons for segregating items for recycling relate to the circular economy, climate change, global warming and reducing mining of raw materials to make new items such as phone charger cables. It also ensures reusable items don’t go to landfills or for incineration.

Mixed Computer Cables for Recycling – Recycle IT

Everyday Wires and Cable

A wire is a single electrical conductor while a number of wires bundled together are called a cable. Cables are a feature of everyday life and are an essential part of electrical and electronic equipment. They mainly consist of plastic covering, aluminium (Al), and copper. Cables are usually recycled once the electronic equipment they relate to, has reached the end of their useful lives.

If you have cables of any type including, electrical, phone, internet, power or charger cables they can be recycled safely at a recycling centre alongside other small electrical items.

Whatever you do, cables, wiring, and chargers should never go in the waste bin or green bin. They contain metals like copper that make them hazardous waste if they’re put in the bin. Some cables and wire can be long and stringy, like outdoor lights, office cabling, and simply wire coat hangers but all can cause havoc for collection equipment and recycling staff when not disposed of correctly.

Cables for Recycling – Recycle IT

Reusing Cable

Sometimes, phone and computer chargers can be reused for a different device than the one they came with. So before buying a new charger, see if you have any old ones that will fit. You can also sell cables for reuse or upcycle cable and wire for craft items or homemade and unique jewellery like rings or broaches. Please do ensure plastic and PVC covering once removed are recycled safely.

Recycling Cable

For some, the recycling and recovery process involves burning the plastic that covers the wire in order to recover the copper and aluminium. This method is extremely harmful to the environment since it releases toxic gases. Please ensure your cable does not end up on fire.

Generally, safe cable recycling works with dry cables with copper or aluminium conductors. The insulation is made of plastic, rubber, or paper with many power cables having, steel or lead armouring for additional safety. These cables can be processed in a cable stripper prior to being downsized into bulk metal and plastic granules which are both reused to make new equipment.

Plastic Granules recovered from Cables

When you recycle anything with a power cable, plug or a battery you are helping to reduce the amount of waste going to landfills. Electrical items generally contain hazardous components and therefore need to be disposed of correctly. By recycling, you help with the reuse of plastics, glass and metals as they are recovered for use again in manufacturing.

It’s easy to check if an electrical item, toy or game is recyclable if it reached the end of its working life. Simply ask the following questions and if the answer is yes, to any of these, it is recyclable: Does it have a plug? Does it use batteries? Does it need charging? Does it have a picture of a wheelie bin crossed out?

About Recycle IT

Recycle IT, is an award-winning social enterprise offering electrical, electronic and metal recycling services through drop off and collection. Recycling services are provided in partnership with WEEE Ireland and South Dublin County Council.

Recycle IT is supported by Pobal and Dormant Accounts and authorised by the National Waste Collection Permit Office and the local authorities across the east midlands waste region.

Our goal is to create training and employment opportunities through the provision of waste management services.

For more information on Recycle IT please call 01 4578321, email or visit our website

Recycle IT Collection Van

Regulations – Deposit Return Scheme

Plastic Bottles and Aluminium Cans

Did you know, drink cans and plastic bottles will soon be returnable for cash as part of a nationwide scheme to reduce litter and increase recycling of metal and plastics for reuse!

Government legislation related to the ‘deposit return scheme’ was published in Nov 2021 and leads the way for the selection of service operators

We are looking forward to this recycling scheme! It brings back memories of collecting glass bottles for a refund many years ago. The bottles were then all reused. Hopefully, this scheme will be user friendly!

Plastic bottles holding 2.3 litres are least harmful to the planet | New  Scientist
Plastic Drinks Bottles

This new initiative is part of Irelands policies on Climate Action and Environment.

The intent of a Deposit Return Scheme (DRS) in Ireland is to increase the capture rate of single-use Polyethylene Terephthalate (PET) and aluminium beverage containers. PET is a clear, strong, and lightweight plastic that is widely used for packaging foods and beverages, especially convenience-sized soft drinks, juices and water.

Read the Press Release Below

The Minister for the Environment, Climate and Communications, Eamon Ryan T.D., has signed the legislative regulations for a Deposit Return Scheme (DRS) in Ireland for plastic bottles and aluminium cans, which will come into force next year.

The Separate Collection (Deposit Return Scheme) Regulations, Statutory Instrument no. 599, provide the framework within which the Minister may approve a scheme operator. The regulations also set out the obligations that will fall to producers, retailers and return point operators under the scheme.

The introduction of a DRS scheme will assist in reducing single-use plastics, help Ireland meet EU targets and promote a wider circular economy.

A DRS is a system used to incentivise consumers to return their empty beverage containers for recycling or reuse. The DRS being introduced in Ireland is focused on plastic bottles and aluminium cans, to ensure that more of these are captured for recycling and to avoid these being discarded as litter.

Drinks Cans

In drafting the regulations, the Department of the Environment, Climate and Communications has worked closely with representatives from the beverage industry who will fund and operate the scheme. A commitment to establish a DRS was part of the Programme for Government and the timeline for its establishment was set out in the Waste Action Plan for a Circular Economy, published in September 2020.

The next step is the appointment, by the Minister, of an approved body to operate the scheme. Further engagement is also required with stakeholders, to fix the rate of the deposit to be paid on in-scope bottles and cans.

The scheme is expected to become operational across the country in Quarter 3 of 2022.

About Recycle IT

Recycle IT is an award-winning, not for profit social enterprise established to create employment and promote environmental awareness through recycling and reuse. We work in partnership with WEEE Ireland and are authorized by your local authority to provide electrical, electronic and pure metal recycling collections across Dublin since 2007. Recycle IT are fully compliant for WEEE Recycling with permit details available here.

Recycle IT – Collection Vehicle

Plastic Free July is here!

What can you do this July?

Plastic Free July® is a global movement that helps millions of people be part of the solution to plastic pollution – so we can have cleaner streets, oceans, and beautiful communities. Will you be part of Plastic Free July by choosing to refuse single-use plastics? Choosing to refuse plastic packaging in July might be an option for you!

Ask you family, friends, sports club or office to commit stop buying or using items packed in single-use plastic. Swap to a reusable alternative. For example, you could swap out takeaway coffee cups for a reusable one, you could start buying plastic-free toothbrushes or use a personal reusable water bottles and so on. 

Plastic Free Poster 1

Can you Refuse’ Single Use Plastic?

Each year in July people all over the world aim to exclude plastic bottles, cutlery, fruit packing, coffee cup lids and other common plastic waste items from their daily life, opting instead for reusable containers or those made from biodegradable materials.  We think this is a great idea and why not make it a year round effort at home and in the workplace. Change is good.

The vision started in Western Australia in 2011 and has since moved across the world to help promote and stop the earth becoming further saturated with plastic materials which are part of our convenience lifestyle.

Lots of items are designed to be used once and disposed of. They fill up bins in homes, work, schools and on streets across the world including Ireland with Irish town and city bins full to capacity most of the time.

Ireland and some other countries have made some progress with a tax on single-use plastic bags which reduced usage but problems still exist with millions of plastics bags, cutlery, bottles plates and cartons used daily.

This usage is rapidly increasing the amount of non-biodegradable product on the earth. These plastics may be cheap and convenient, but it’s having real consequences. Plastic is polluting our land, air, and oceans; it is harming our marine life and even invading our bodies with Microbeads everywhere.

Plastic Free Poster 2

Where to start – We have added 10 Tips to help

BRING YOUR OWN BAG: Get yourself a couple of good cloth bags and leave them in the car or beside the front door so you’ll always have them on hand.

DON’T BUY BOTTLED WATER: Get some reusable bottles and fit a cost-effective water filter to the taps in your home.

FRUIT CARTONS:  Avoid plastic fruit and vegetable packaging. A single plastic produce carton can take more than 1000 years to degrade so shop for unpackaged fruit and veg when you can or leave the plastic with the store.  They will get the idea!

DAILY COFFEE: Take away coffee cups are lined with plastic and often can’t be recycled. Take your own coffee cup or have a sit-down coffee using the cafe’s cups.

PACK A LUNCHBOX:  Use a good sturdy lunchbox with separate compartments, to allow you to pack food straight into separately, eliminating the need for plastic wrapping and avoid plastic-wrapped snack foods like biscuits or bars. Try making some at home, it cheaper and somewhat healthier.

PLASTIC FOOD WRAP: Buy some stainless steel or long plastic containers to help eliminate the need for single life plastic food wrapping.

STRAWS: If you really want a straw, buy reusable straws for use at home and demand reusable straws from your local takeaways or restaurants.

CUT PLASTIC CUTLERY: Plastic cutlery is another single-use plastic item you can avoid. Keep some reusable cutlery in your lunch or picnic bag.

SOURCE A SODA MAKER: This helps reduce the amount of plastic soft drinks bottles purchased, used and disposed of in your home and office weekly.

SHOP WISE: Ask your local shop and supermarket to make the change away from plastic or vote with your feet until they do. It will happen and think about all the waste which won’t enter your waste and the related time saved.

Plastic Free Poster 3

Plastic Free 2021 – what to do! 

Just join the challenge and ‘Choose To Refuse’ single-use plastic during 2021. You can assist in achieving the goals of having a world without plastic waste.  Will you join and give up? If so learn more, and sign up at

Did You Know?

Friends of the Earth are interested to have Plastic Deposit Return Scheme in Ireland. They say it is a tried and tested method of collecting plastic bottles in public places, in states across America and countries across Europe. People can return their used drinks containers in exchange for money at reverse vending machines. Just like we returned glass for coins in Ireland in the past we can do this for plastic and aluminium today.

In late 2019 our previous Climate Action and Environment Minister Richard Bruton said he would like to see a study before taking any action in Ireland.

At the same time, final regulations for Scotland’s Deposit Return Scheme have now been laid in the Scottish Parliament. It is now confirmed the scheme’s go-live date will be 1 July 2022, giving retailers and producers “time to prepare for a successful scheme

What’s Planned 

If you purchase drinks in Scotland will have to pay a (£) deposit on every bottle or drinks can purchase. This ambitious new scheme unveiled by the Scottish government aims to help reduce and recover items for reuse and safe recycling.

The deposit return scheme is due to be the first national scheme in the UK and will cover glass and plastic bottles, as well as aluminium and steel drinks cans, sold in Scotland.

The consumer will get their deposit back when they return the empty bottle or can to the retailer. The scheme will operate throughout Scotland, including rural areas.  All types of drinks and all containers above 50ml and up to three litres in size are included. What do you think about this initiative? Would Ireland benefit from similar?

Some Progress!

In October 2020 the new Irish Minister for the Environment, Climate and Communications, Eamon Ryan TD invited the public to give their views on the design of a deposit return scheme for plastic bottles and aluminium cans. The consultation feedback is being reviewed and you can get further details here.

Some positive steps are been taken by food retailers in Ireland. For example Aldi are removing plastic wrapping from product like drinks cartons, some fruit, veg and meat cartons and polystyrene from frozen pizza bases. You might ask yourself and then your local store manager what they are doing to really reduce plastic usage?

Organisations like Coca Coke and Guinness have also removed plastic from drinks carton and replaced with cardboard cartons so some change is underway. We are all demand and do more!

About Recycle IT

As you know lots of electrical, electronic and metal items are packed in plastic and have a plastic cover or coating. When these items are recycled the plastic is removed and mainly reused in new products. We do our best to aid this process but like you we we can struggle with everyday soft plastics used in the office or canteen. We do our best to reduce and this is why we follow Plastic Free July its helps with tips and guides change!

Recycle IT is an award-winning not for profit enterprise providing a collection and drop off service for all types of waste electrical and electronic equipment (WEEE). Last year Recycle IT offered to drop off and collection services to homes, schools, charities, and businesses across Dublin and surrounding areas collecting a range of WEEE which includes thousands of computers, cables, monitors, microwaves and TV’s.

Recycle IT services are provided in partnership with WEEE Ireland. Recycle IT are supported by Pobal, South Dublin County Council and authorized by the National Waste Collection Permit Office and the local authorities across Dublin, Kildare and Wicklow.

Recycle IT Logo
Recycle IT Logo