The Durham Region succeeded in its attempt to smash the world record for the most batteries collected in a 24 hours period. The attempt started on Thursday November 15 and ended just after 6 p.m. As of 5 p.m. on Thursday, the Region had collected 4,730 kilograms (10,428 pounds) of dead single-use dry-cell batteries, easily breaking the previous Guinness Book of World Records for the most batteries collected in a 24-hour period, which was 400 pounds and 14 ounces.
The record is still unofficial until approved by Guinness representatives, the Region has to submit the final documents and compiled evidence, which includes footage of the collection taped on a video camera, for official verification. The benefit of attempting the record was environmental, to keep all of those chemicals out of the landfill. All landfills leach into the groundwater. Going for a Guinness record was done to "heighten awareness and people will pay attention," noted Mr. Veiga, supervisor of waste operations for the Region.
The Regional Municipality of Durham is a leader in waste diversion and now it has the world record to prove it. A great initiative by the Region that received an overwhelming response from Durham residents. It allowed Durham residents who receive curbside collection services the opportunity to place their unwanted intact, single-use household batteries in specially designed battery bags and put them at the curb on top of blue box materials during special collection week which was Nov 12 to Nov 16.
86 per cent of the materials in spent single-use batteries is recoverable through technology and some of it gets shipped to Covanta (the company building the incinerator in Clarington) in Buffalo. The outer metal casing is recycled into automobile components, while the inside chemicals are processed into fertilizer. Only the paper and plastic aren't recycled. When Durham's incinerator is operating in two years, those items will be turned into energy. The bags residents got to put the batteries in will be collected by Indaco Manufacturing Ltd. in Pickering as they too will be recycled for remanufacturing.
Residents who missed their collection date, or residents in apartment buildings and condominiums, who do not have curbside collection from the Region, are encouraged to visit www.makethedrop.ca to find the nearest battery recycling drop-off location that can be used any time of the year, the Region says.
Way to go Durham Region!