Environment Canada study confirms need to improve consumer battery recovery and recycling

    OTTAWA, April 5 /CNW Telbec/ - Environment Canada today released the
Canadian Consumer Battery Baseline Study, which reveals that the annual number
of consumer batteries discarded is increasing dramatically, releasing a
growing amount of dangerous substances into our land and water.
    "We are concerned that large amounts of products containing toxic
substances are thrown out in our landfills every day" said the Honourable John
Baird, Minister of the Environment. "The results of this Study will help
Environment Canada challenge the battery industry to improve the recovery and
recycling of batteries."
    The Study provides the first national estimates of the amount of heavy
metals such as mercury, cadmium and lead that are potentially released into
the environment through the disposal of batteries. It also suggests that the
rate of recycling of rechargeable batteries, which contain toxic substances of
concern, is very low.
    As part of the Chemicals Management Plan launched last December 2006,
Canada's New Government is committed to reducing releases of chemical
substances that pose a risk to human health and the environment.
    Regulations or other measures to manage the risks associated with
products containing toxic substances, including batteries which contain
mercury, are also being considered. Environment Canada will continue to work
with provinces and territories to share information and best practices to
assist in their recycling and waste reduction efforts.
    Canadians can get involved and recycle batteries such as those used in
cellular phones, cordless power tools and laptop computers through many
participating retailers and municipalities across Canada. For more information
on this Study and the recycling of batteries, please visit Environment
Canada's web site at www.ec.gc.ca or call our toll free line at

    (Egalement offert en français)

For further information:

For further information: Eric Richer, Press Secretary, Office of the
Minister of the Environment, (819) 997-1441; Environment Canada Media
Relations, (819) 934-8008, 1-888-908-8008

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