Do you have spare LEGO bricks hidden away in a box?
That LEGO Bricks are plastic, raises concerns for the environment. LEGO Bricks are not bio-degradable and recent studies have shown that once in landfill, a LEGO brick can take 1500 years to break down. Even then, The LEGO bricks break down into micro plastics that are dangerous to birds and small reptiles when ingested.
The LEGO Group makes their bricks from twenty distinct types of plastics but 80% of these are ABS (acrylonitrile-butadiene-styrene), a thermoplastic polymer consisting of three monomers. Leaving out the technical terms, LEGO comes from petroleum.
ABS materials and the plastics used to make LEGO bricks are difficult to recycle as they first need shredding into small pellets and then combined with new polymers to form new plastic before moulded, at extreme temperatures, into things like furniture. Often the cost of recovering the plastics is not worth the effort for recycling companies.
How should you dispose of your LEGO Bricks then?
Melting down LEGO bricks is not the only means of recycling. Recycling is the use of waste or unwanted materials as new products. The durability of LEGO bricks might make them hard to recycle but makes them perfect for reuse or repurposing to put it another way.
In 2019, LEGO Launched REPLAY in North America, a recycling initiative that sought to reuse old LEGO Bricks by cleaning and rearranging them into new sets and sent to organisations, schools, and persons in need.
In 2020, a group got together with the aim to set up a similar company and that is how the Topy Brick Recycling company came about.
We contribute to a sustainable community by recycling used LEGO bricks and repurposing them into projects to foster skills of the future in both children and adults. We accept donations through our website toybrickrecycling.com.au where we will send you a prepaid address label to post us your LEGO free of charge to you.
We also accept donations at the Stirling Square Markets – Guildford. We hope to be at the Vintage markets in the Swan Valley on 15 March. At the markets we have a large container where you can drop off your unwanted LEGO bricks and then check out our new projects.