Green light for child restraint recycling program

23 December 2019
Child restraints in recycling bin
child restraint trial_mobile

After a successful trial, a new initiative will provide parents with a convenient solution to dispose of their old, unwanted and potentially unsafe child car safety seats for recycling.

The NRMA is a proud partner in this important new initiative to help establish a recycling program and give families a more environmental-friendly solution for old or damaged car seats. We believe it is the recycling decision that could save a life.

Across Australia, more than 1,400,000 new child car seats are sold annually with an estimated 200,000 are disposed of each year with the majority going to landfill. Even more concerning is the fact that thousands of others are passed on to family members, or sold, for use beyond their recommended life span of ten years.

The 2017 trial throughout Queensland, NSW and Victoria ran by sustainability and environmental management consultants, Equilibrium, successfully collected 1,921 seats for recovery and recycling and diverted 10,342 kilograms of materials including plastic and steel from landfill.

A Memorandum of Understanding was signed in November 2019 that will see car seat manufacturers, retailers and motoring associations, including the NRMA come together to adopt a “Seat Care” program that makes it easy for parents and families to dispose of old and potentially dangerous child safety seats for recycling.

Currently, there is no program to support the take-back of old child car safety seats in Australia. As a result SeatCare is a timely solution that will address both safety and environmental objectives in a practical way.

The materials recovered from the dismantled seats can be made into a range of products including outdoor furniture and flooring, bollards, garden edging, retaining walls, posts and stakes.

The newly formed SeatCare program is expected to commence in mid-2020 to provide families, carers and others with an environmentally sustainable way to dispose of their old child car restraints through the rollout of collection sites in both metropolitan and regional areas. As soon as the facilities are open, we will ensure to communicate further details to Members and the community.