The local branch of VPZ, the UK’s largest vaping retailer, has teamed up with waste management provider WasteCare, to launch a recycling service for vapes and e-cigarettes at its Castle Street store.
Vapes contain lithium batteries and plastic and when littered they can cause harm to the local environment. If alight, they can also release toxic fumes.
The move comes just after an Angus Council waste collection crew had a close call which is likely to have been caused by the improper disposal of a lithium battery like the kind found in vapes.
Around eight tonnes of mixed recycling had been collected from the Birkhill area last Tuesday, when the vehicle contents started to smoke. The crew quickly alerted the Scottish Fire and Rescue Service and the contents had to be tipped out, with permission, on to the overflow car-park at Birkhill Millennium Hall so the potential fire could be dealt with.
VPZ has announced ambitions to responsibly recycle all kinds of vaping devices and the service is now available across the company’s entire network of more than 150 stores.
Open to all vapers, anyone can visit a store and safely dispose of their vaping devices or e-cigarettes. All recycling processes will be handled by WasteCare which will be responsible for safely collecting, treating, and recovering disposable vapes and reusable hardware devices.
Director Doug Mutter, believes the recycling service will help to clean up local environments while educating vapers on being responsible and using more sustainable vaping products.
He said: “Any form of littering is unacceptable however the proliferation of disposable vape use has led to single-use devices being discarded in local environments.
"Our partnership responds to this challenge head on and vapers can come into our stores, including Forfar, to recycle their vape devices, both disposable and reusable, in a safe and responsible way.”
VPZ is continuing to call on both the UK and Scottish Governments to introduce tighter controls and licensing for selling vaping products.
Mr Mutter added: “At the moment we have a challenge in the industry where many imported, unregulated, disposable vaping products are readily available from local convenience stores, supermarkets and several other general retailers with no age verification checks or control in place.
“This is an emerging problem that threatens the huge progress of vaping in transforming the health of the nation and helping the country meet its smoke-free targets.
“We are urging the UK Government to act now and follow best practices from countries like New Zealand, where flavoured products can only be sold from specialist licensed vaping stores. Thus, ensuring that an appropriate challenge 25 policy is in place and consultation is aimed towards adult smokers and vapers.”