Dubai: Dubai Municipality and HP Middle East have joined hands in an environmental initiative to help reduce waste in the emirate by recycling toner cartridges.

Under the agreement, HP Planet Partners Programme provides a free and easy recycling service for original HP toner cartridges, which are used to produce new cartridges and other products.

Mohammad Abdul Karim Julfar, Assistant Director-General of Dubai Municipality for Corporate Support Services Sector, said that the municipality, which uses thousands of printers at its headquarters and branch offices, has become the first government department in the emirate to cooperate with HP Middle East in this environmental initiative.

"Dubai Municipality has always been at the forefront in any of the attempts that help save the environment by reducing the amount of waste that goes to landfills," he said.

Hamdan Al Shair, Director of the Environment Department, said the municipality was the first to set up a PC refurbishment centre in a bid to help reduce e-waste.

First to follow

The computers, printers and other accessories refurbished at the centre are then donated to schools, organisations and poor people all over the world, he added.

Ameen Mortazavi, General Manager of HP Middle East, said since the company started its first recycling centre in 1997, it had recycled close to two billion pounds of products and materials.

"HP has installed a number of empty cartridge collection boxes in the municipality, and the turnaround for delivery and box collection is five days," he said.

The initiative started with Dubai Municipality in the UAE will soon expand to cover other government departments and companies, as well as individual consumers, and although HP products were designed to be recycled, the company accepts other products as well, Ernest Azzam from HP said.