Changes to Copper Recycling Legislation

Changes to Copper Recycling Legislation

On the 1st of December 2020, new legislation is coming into force for the recycling of copper and copper alloys. But don’t worry, this legislation won’t affect the recycling process for our customers – the responsibility lies on scrap metal dealers to be licenced and compliant to the new rules.

Similar to legislation that protects against silver and copper theft, scrap metal dealers – including Auscon – will be recording all transaction details including personal contacts of the seller and regularly report this information to police. This is one of the steps that the Western Australian Government is taking to reduce copper theft.

The push for this change has come about due to the increase in copper theft that is prevalent in Western Australia. Opportunist thieves strip copper wiring from homes, building sites, industrial sites and have even stolen memorial plaques and sculptures to sell for cash. The theft of copper wiring and pipes costs plumbing contractors and others in the construction sector hundreds of thousands of dollars each year in WA. It is likely that money made from stolen copper helps to finance the illegal drug trade.

Western Power has also reported thefts, with significant quantities of copper stolen from their live electricity network. After the copper is taken, power poles and other infrastructure has been left in potentially unsafe conditions around WA. 

Due to the extra expense for scrap metal dealers, many businesses will not be going forward with the licencing – those dealers will no longer be able to buy scrap copper for cash.

At Auscon however, we’ll be keeping up to date with licencing requirements to continue being your go-to scrap metal dealer to sell your second-hand copper. When the legislation comes into effect from the 1st of December, it will be business as usual for our customers – just bring in your ID like you normally would! If you have any questions regarding your scrap copper or other metals, feel free to contact our experienced team on (08) 9497 1340.

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