Keeping batteries out of landfill

Batteries, particularly lithium-ion (LI) batteries from personal devices such as smartphones and computers contain hazardous materials and are a leading cause of fires in landfills and compactor trucks. Fires caused by electronic waste are a growing problem – when refuse is compacted or crushed in rubbish trucks and landfills, the batteries can be damaged and cause fires. 

From 1 November 2021, items with a battery will no longer be accepted as refuse at the Waste Recovery Centre (Vivian Place Tāhunanui).

There are options for disposing of loose batteries free of charge below, and more information on other options for recycling e-waste items.

The Nelson Environment Centre which is located next to the Waste Recovery Centre accepts electronic items for recycling and recovery, including batteries.

There is also a free e-cycling service available through a national TechCollectNZ pilot programme for personal and small business electronic items which can be dropped off at Noel Leeming in Nelson. For more information go to:

Drop your batteries at our free drop-off points

We accept:

  • Every day loose household and office batteries up to the size of a power tool battery pack.
  • Rechargeable batteries (eg for personal devices such as cellphones, household rechargeable batteries, etc)
  • Single-use batteries (eg for hearing aids, cameras, toys, clocks, radios, calculators, etc)

There are free battery drop-off points at the following places:

Please note, this excludes electric vehicle batteries. Please discuss disposal options with the retailer from which you purchased the vehicle.

To improve the life of your batteries, use rechargeable batteries where possible, or choose better quality batteries which last longer (please note that rechargeable batteries are not suitable for some applications such as smoke alarms or emergency torches).

If your workplace uses significant amounts of batteries, check options from specialist companies and waste providers for safe recycling and disposal services.

Lead acid batteries

  • Lead acid batteries are accepted by Nelson Environment Centre
  • Some garages and auto retailers may accept old car batteries

Marine flares

  • From 1 November 2021, flares past their use-by date can be dropped off free of charge at the Nelson Marina office (8am/6pm) for safe disposal
  • Marine suppliers may also have flare drop-off options