Please, read till the end, we need your help to make the state taking up appropriate responsibilities about collection of waste batteries and accumulators!


Unlike Western countries, in Ukraine has never existed a state program of the collection of waste batteries and accumulators from the population, such as in the European Union. But such as “There (in Odessa) everything breathes and blows of Europe” (A. Pushkin) residents of Odessa cannot observe calmly how hazardous substances are thrown out together with household garbage and go to landfills of the domestic waste and simply buried into the ground, poisoning all living world around.

Therefore, in 2012, we organized an initiative that, as a “crutch”, started to help the state and society to reduce somehow the negative consequences of this practice.

The way it was:

Year 2012

It all started with a simple topic at the Forum of Odessa. Residents of the city started to collect batteries on their own and send them with volunteers to Lvov to the factory of  SE Argentum”. In the same year, was created the information site, which helped to coordinate volunteers under its own “brand”. At the same time, the funniest thing was that the volunteers could do all these things due to imperfect legislation: the collection and transportation of waste batteries up to 7 mAh does not require licensing! :)

At the end of 2012, we had 10 permanent collection points in Odessa.

Year 2013

Our initiative is already discussing on national and regional channels:

a)  Channel “Novyi Kanal”, program”REPORTER”  02/06/2013

b) Channel “Novaya Odessa”, program “Other politics” 03/06/2013

c) TV channel “Zdorov’ye”, program “Sensible Minds” 09/17/2013

d) “Tretij cifrovoj” 11/19/2013

e) Channel “Moya Odessa”, news release 11/20/2013 

In the middle of 2013, we collected and sent for recycling at least 226 kg of batteries. 

It was a great time when the state, represented by the Argentum SE, paid for the delivery of waste batteries to the factory as its own expenses (!). Volunteers just were going to the department of “Nova Poshta” and sending a box with batteries for the recipient’s expense.

In the same year, we also translated statements from the EU directive “About Batteries” Directive 2006/66 / EU, which described main principles of the European Union during collecting and disposing of batteries, and volunteers participated in several exhibitions and events, distributing branded calendars and conducting “educational work” :)

At the end of 2013, the state, represented by the Ministry of Ecology and Natural Resources, promised to organize a comprehensive system for the collection and disposal of waste accumulators and batteries. 

«In addition, the program “Throw it away correctly!” also provides storage and disposal of collected batteries in accordance with EU environmental regulations and will operate on a permanent basis.»

Also Minister O. Poskuryakov said that:

“In Ukraine, the problem of safe disposal of waste accumulators and batteries has long  been ripe… This problem cannot be solved without a well-developed collection, logistics and disposal system. Therefore, in fact, this is the first project of such kind on the territory of Ukraine”

Up to the end of 2013 and beginning of 2014, we had about 25 permanent collection points

In 2013, residents of Odessa collected at least 562.8 kg of batteries, which is about 6% of the total volume collected all over Ukraine.

Year 2014

At the beginning of 2014, the Ministry of the Environment made one more loud statement:

“About three to four million of batteries per year will be disposed of by our facilities, and some of them we will export  abroad», – he said.

However, next events showed that the Minister of Ecology and Natural Resources only showed off and the state did nothing of their promises.

Since 31 of March, 2014 SE “Argentum” stopped paying for the delivery of waste batteries and accumulators.  From that moment, each of our volunteers “serving” the collection points was faced with a choice: to stop collecting batteries or to continue, but pay for the shipment from their own pockets. 

But the helping hand was given by entrepreneurs, for whom the collection of batteries and the associated costs were a part of their image and positive advertising.

On 17 of April, 2014 chain store “Kantskorally”  joined our team”.  Individual volunteers also did not leave society in trouble, taking on themselves the financial burden of sending.

On 26 of April, 2014, our collection points appeared in the 2GIS application, which helped a lot to facilitate navigation for residents of Odessa who wanted to hand over their batteries.

On 04 of May, 2014 we took part in the “Gesheft” festival, informing people about the importance of collecting batteries, our table looked like this. 

On 7 of July, 2014 our collection points began to appear in region of Odessa, it all started in Podolsk (formerly Kotovsk)

At the end of September 2014, we had 30 collection points in Odessa and the region.

On 08 of October, 2014 we made a “crowdfunding”. Got all together and collectively sent a batch of batteries for about 396 kg (!), dividing the shipping costs among us. The local representative of the German eco-household chemicals “FROSCH” helped us a lot – by providing a truck and sharing the shipping costs with us. Thanks to them so much for this!

In autumn 2014, we appealed to the Minister of Ecology and to the Odessa City Council with a request to contribute and take the initiative into their own hands. For which we received a series of “replies”.

In 2014, residents of Odessa and the region collected at least 4497.3 kg of batteries, which is about 24% of the total volume collected all over Ukraine.

Year 2015

On 18 of September, 2015, the “Pervyi Gorodskoy” made a report about us.

On 16 of October, 2015, students of the Lyceum “Chernomorskiy” collected 129 kg of batteries. The local representative of FROSCH company helped us one more time with the shipment of batteries to the factory in Lviv.

On 4 of December, 2015, the insurance company “Knyazha” helped us with the “expansion” to the region, joining the initiative and opening 8 collection points in towns and villages all over the region of Odessa. 

In 2015, residents of Odessa and the region collected at least 1108.6 kg of batteries, which is about 5% of the total volume collected all over Ukraine.

Year 2016

On 23 of March, 2016 we appeared in the news release of the channel “GNews”. 

On 8 of April, 2016, Tavria V showed an example of a bad SMM and did not even correct their post after our comment about collecting batteries during four years and about the opportunity to bring them not only (!) to Tavria V store. It’s a pity. But in any case, both of us are on the same side and thanks them for collecting!

In summer of 2016 pupils of school number 13 collected 147 kg of batteries, and we helped to send them.

On 24 of September, 2016 we created a petition on the website of the CMU of Ukraine about “Creation of a state program for the disposal of used batteries and accumulators”, but unfortunately, it did not receive proper support.

In 2016, residents of Odessa and the region collected at least 1280.7 kg of batteries, which is about 6% of the total volume collected all over Ukraine.

Year 2017

At the beginning of 2017 we sent another large batch of 148 kg to the Argentum factory by our own expenses.

On 20 of March, 2017, many residents of Odessa and our volunteers helped to eliminate the consequences of the “Battery Catastrophe” between 7 km and Sukhoi Liman. We have collected 22 packs of batteries. 

On 21 of March, 2017, the “Pervyi Gorodskoy” made one more report about us.

Year 2018

There were not so many events, but this fact did not prevent us from methodically collecting batteries and sending them for recycling.

In July 2018, we reached the mark of 100 (one hundred) collecting points in Odessa and the region. Achievement unlocked! 

In September 2018, the first alarming news arrived. The state enterprise “Argentum”, with which we had been cooperating since 2012, from the very beginning of the launched initiative – announced a temporary suspension of the acceptance of batteries from volunteers in connection with the “reorganization” until October 2018. After this they extended the deadline until the end of 2018.. 

According to the Unified Register of Legal Entities and Individual Entrepreneurs and open data, 119 enforcement proceedings were started against Argentum SE, their VAT payer certificate was canceled … Apparently, the “reorganization” was connected with this fact..

We tried to contact them and discuss the problem, but it was unsuccessful. Their website was unavailable, and in the last response we found out that contact persons at the factory were no longer active and that in fact this factory didn’t  accept and recycle batteries any more.

Year 2019

Bad news!

It could be stated that SE “Argentum” de facto unilaterally stopped accepting batteries from the population (!)

We understood that many of our volunteers were faced with the problem of already collected “on hands” batteries, which were physically impossible to recycle in our country.

Now we see two solutions of this problem:

1. Try to hand over all collected volumes of batteries to commercial networks that have direct agreements for recycling with SE “Argentum”: for example, Watsons, Tavria V, etc. then “wash our hands” and stop collecting batteries..

2. Keep all these batteries til better times (when the state finally fulfills its promises and creates a mechanism for collecting and recycling of batteries without “crutches” of volunteers). And to overwhelm the Ministry of Ecology with a wave of indignation  – – demanding the creation of a program for the recycling and collection of batteries, or at least the resumption of the collection and recycling of batteries from volunteers by the State Enterprise “Argentum”.

Unfortunately, there are no other enterprises in Ukraine that can recycle batteries. We were simply taken by surprise without preliminary warning and without opportunity to stop the collection beforehand

In any case, even if this is “the end” and we will not  be able to find connection with the state – we had 7 wonderful years, thanks a lot to all of you for your efforts! We collected more than 7 tons of batteries during these 7 years and didn’t let them fall into the ground! :)

But, unfortunately, the state one more time setup all of us.