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Equipment Recycling and Disposal

The creation of e-waste has become an issue for the University of Otago. A significant proportion of this waste is either stockpiled by departments or disposed of inappropriately. The incorrect disposal of e-waste is a security risk.

E-waste Recycling Centre

The E-waste Recycling Centre  is a joint initiative between ITS and Property Services and operates at no cost to departments.

The Centre can receive any University-owned items. Once in the Centre, items are sorted for recycling or disposal. If data has not already been erased from items such as floppy disks, hard drives, or digital cameras, the Centre will undertake this task. If requested, the originating department can receive confirmation that data has been securely erased.

If you are looking for a particular item, please contact AskOtago

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How do I get my e-waste removed?

Please prepare your e-waste for disposal by completing the necessary University administration work, which is:

  • complete and submit a fixed asset disposal form for any equipment on the Asset Register. Please refer to the University's Fixed Assets Procedure for more information about this
  • Remove any network registrations for your devices
  • Remove any asset tags or stickers. The Centre will attempt to remove anything that is left but some are very time-consuming to remove

If you wish to dispose of a photocopier, please contact the vendor in the first instance (e.g., Ricoh, Canon, etc.) as a large number of these devices are leased and not University-owned.

Writing notes on equipment with their problems is much appreciated, for example: LCD - "dead backlight", "lines on the screen", PCs - "Faulty Motherboard" or "Faulty PSU", etc.

Once your items are ready for disposal please complete a Property Services online request for collection of your e-waste. Please ensure you give a brief description of the items to be collected, quantities, and pickup location. This process also applies to departments at other University of Otago campuses as alternative arrangements can be made for your equipment locally.

If you are able to drop off your E-waste items personally, please contact AskOtago to arrange a drop off time with the E-waste team. However, for larger or multiple items please complete the Property Services online request.

If you have any questions please contact AskOtago.

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What is e-waste?

E-waste is most electrical devices with a circuit board or strong metallic content that are no longer useful. Some common examples are:

  • computers, laptops, and associated equipment
  • televisions, LCD and CRT monitors
  • mobile phones
  • camcorders and VHS/DVD players
  • mass spectrometers
  • scanners and printers/multifunction devices, etc.
  • microwaves, vacuums, stereo and audio transcribing equipment
  • scientific and technical equipment
  • electronic measuring devices and electric motors
  • power cords and data cables

This equipment may contain chemicals that are hazardous to the environment if they are not disposed of correctly, as well as sensitive data that needs to be deleted.

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What is E-waste Recycling?

E-waste recycling is the practice of reusing, or distributing for reuse, electronic equipment and components rather than discarding them at the end of their lifecycle.

Property Services currently operates the University of Otago's e-waste removal service. If your department has e-waste to be removed, please submit a request to Property Services.

Please contact AskOtago for further information about E-waste Recycling Centre.

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Secure Data Removal

Sensitive data must be removed from all computing equipment and media before it leaves the University of Otago for reuse or recycling. The staff at the E-waste Recycling Centre will securely remove data stored on all items on your behalf.

Please contact AskOtago if you need advice about the correct disposal or destruction of sensitive electronic equipment or data.

Do you have a question? Please visit the AskOtago Service Portal about equipment recycling and disposal

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Recycled equipment for personal use

Recycled items from the E-waste Recycling Centre are available for personal or non-University use if not required by departments. Priority is given to students, schools, and community groups.

Older computers are usually available from the E-waste Recycling Centre but these are given away on an "as-is" basis, securely erased and with no operating system, software, or support. Laptops are not available.

Email AskOtago IT at with the details of any recycled items you are looking for. You must submit a request before you can receive any items.