We cross back to Asia for our next blog in this series and arrive in Singapore. ‘RENEW’ – REcyling the Nation’s Electronic Waste – is a StarHub initiative that reflects their commitment to environmental sustainability. In 2012, the programme was launched as a voluntary partnership between StarHub, DHL and TES, with the blessings and guidance from the Ministry of Environment and Water Resources (MEWR) and the National Environment Agency (NEA).
Scaling up with new partners and concepts
In June 2018, the RENEW network was further expanded to include major electronics retailers like Best Denki, COURTS, Gain City and Harvey Norman. Earlier this year (2020), StarHub partnered with NEA to launch a trial placement of e-waste recycling bins at hawker centres (a place that offers many kinds of food at affordable prices) and community spaces within Tampines Town, the third largest residential town in Singapore. A total of nine RENEW bins were deployed to better understand the e-waste recycling habits of consumers at these locations. As of May 2020, the RENEW network consists of over 420 bins across 380 locations in Singapore.
With a growth of 36 per cent year-on-year
The programme’s objective is to provide members of the public with an accessible and convenient avenue to recycle their e-waste. Since launch in 2012, the amount of e-waste collected through the RENEW programme has increased exponentially, at more than 36 per cent year-on-year. In 2019 alone, the RENEW programme collected over 174 tonnes of e-waste.
Working closely with the key partners
The RENEW programme is a classic example of an MNO working together with partners from different industries using their core-competencies for a successful project. In this case, DHL takes care of the collection of e-waste across all RENEW bins island-wide and transports the e-waste to TES’ facility for recycling. At TES, all collected e-waste is recycled using state-of-the art equipment and processing techniques aimed at delivering the lowest possible environmental impact. Before a RENEW bin is deployed at a particular site, the StarHub team identifies these site-owners and property managers as partners of the project. This has been one success factor for the project to grow in scale at an impressive rate.
A net cast wider with environment responsibility in mind
The RENEW bins are placed at over 380 locations around Singapore including:
- StarHub stores
- Shopping malls
- Community centres
- Business parks
- Recreation venues
- Government agencies.
Any person can simply bring their e-waste and deposit them into these bins.
This project is set up purely to provide opportunities and convenience for the public to recycle their e-waste in line with the Singapore Government’s People-Public-Private approach to tackling environmental issues.
Creating awareness where it matters – the school’s e-waste challenge
StarHub being a long-time supporter of the School Green Awards (SGA) organised by the Singapore Environment Council, launched the E-Waste Challenge in 2018 to educate youths on the importance of e-waste recycling. DHL and TES supported the E-waste Challenge with their respective expertise, and the collection was added to the RENEW e-waste collection. The StarHub team sees the SGA as its contribution to stewardship of our next generation, towards a more sustainable Singapore.
The StarHub team believes that more can be done to educate and encourage the community on the importance of e-waste recycling. Currently the team is working on producing an informative educational video on e-waste recycling. The video will be aired on TV channels and published on their social media platforms to create more awareness.