The phasing out of energy-guzzling incandescent light bulbs is almost complete. To further help the environment, should disposable batteries be targeted next in favour of rechargeable ones?
Disposable batteries are a waste of money and a waste of space. Not only are they much more expensive to use compared to rechargeable batteries, but also their ‘disposable’ nature means many of us throw dozens of them away without a second thought.
These then end up in landfill, where they leak harmful chemicals into the earth. And what about recycling them? Well that’s a nice idea, but recent research has found that half the population has never recycled a battery. Not surprising, as when we investigated battery recycling last November we found several shops were flouting EU rules and neglecting to offer recycling boxes.
Clearly, disposable batteries are bad for the environment – so why doesn’t the government ban them outright? There may need to be a few exceptions (9V disposable batteries for smoke alarms perhaps) but rechargeable batteries could replace disposables in most cases.
Some people – many whom have never tried rechargeable batteries – moan about the hassle of recharging them, but if we had to use them surely we would get used to it?
Recharging your batteries is no more hassle than recharging your phone – something many of us do daily without a second thought. And the fact that you can now buy ‘hybrid’ batteries, which come pre-charged and hold their charge impressively well, mean they are pretty much just as convenient as disposables.
And financially? Well on that level a ban would certainly act in our favour. A pack of rechargeable batteries may be pricier than a pack of disposables – but the fact you can reuse them up to 1,000 times means each pack saves you hundreds of pounds over its lifetime, compared to using disposables.
Am I missing something, or is it clear that batteries should start being phased out now? Of course some people will kick up a fuss, like they did with light bulbs, but I can’t see any other reason not to.
Should we phase out disposable batteries?
No - rechargables aren't a good alternative (42%, 254 Votes)
Yes - they are wasteful (36%, 222 Votes)
I'm still confused about what's best (22%, 133 Votes)
Total Voters: 609