25 Jul 2024


VSD recycling scheme passes the 100-tonne mark

ABB reports that it has recycled 100 tonnes of old variable-speed drives, since it started a recycling scheme in the UK in 2003. The proportion of materials that it recycles has risen from 90% of the weight of the drive at the start of the scheme, to 97% today.

The scheme recycles VSDs made by ABB and other manufacturers. The drives are collected by the certified waste management company, S2S, from bins located at the premises of 12 ABB Authorised Value Providers across the UK. Larger drives, or large quantities of smaller drives, can be collected directly from users’ premises.

ABB says it offers the recycling scheme as a service to its customers, although it is not required to do so by the WEEE Directive

“Currently variable-speed drives are not covered by the WEEE Directive,” explains Alan Dukinfield of S2S. “However, should this change in the future, drive users can be assured that we have the capacity to recycle all of their waste drives.”

Once the drive has been removed for recycling, ABB issues a certificate that can be used for environmental audits by users complying with ISO 14001.

ABB says that replacing an old drive with a newer model can make an immediate impact on the user’s carbon footprint. Depending on the size the drive, operating it for half-a-day can cut carbon emissions by enough to compensate for the carbon impact of manufacturing and eventually disposing of the drive.