Incorporating Lead Aware Times ( ISSN 1440-4966) and Lead Advisory Service News ( ISSN 1440-0561)
The journal of The LEAD (Lead Education and Abatement Design) Group Inc.
Recycling Leaded Waste
by Robin Mosman, The LEAD Group
The disposal of lead-contaminated paint, ceiling dust and building materials is becoming an increasingly thorny problem to government departments, which are at this point in time still involved in lengthy discussions seeking solutions.
However, LEADLINEs focus on lead and huge network of contacts on all aspects of the lead issue gave it the necessary "big picture" view to see business opportunities in this situation.
This happened when as a member of the Lead in Air working group of the NSW Lead Taskforce in 1993, Elizabeth OBrien went on a factory tour of the secondary lead smelter in Sydneys inner west. She had heard of lead being recycled from paint waste in Canada, and on asking what minimum percentage of lead in waste (soil, dust or paint debris) would be viable to recycle, was told I.5%.
Referral of interested people by LEADLINE has resulted in the smelter now offering a service whereby they will take ceiling dust and leaded paint from lead-abatement contractors, even at less than 1% lead. They charge $250 per tonne for this service, but basically offer it as a community service, in recognition of their share of responsibility for cradle-to-grave management of lead. They will also accept smaller amounts from individual householders for free.
The smelter management see it as being in their best interest to help manage the problem of lead in the wider community, and have applied to be licensed waste processors with the NSW EPA.
LEADLINE is now able to refer lead abatement contractors to the smelter for the disposal of the leaded waste they produce.
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Updated 24 November 2012