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Impact of CDs and DVDs

While high-quality CDs could last for 50 to 100 years under ideal conditions, this isn’t true for many low-quality, cheap CDs. CDs & DVD’s usually can’t be recycled because they’re made of mixed materials, which are difficult and uneconomical to separate into their component parts for recycling.


  • Rent DVDs through an established scheme. Once you’ve watched it, send it back and get a new one. No need to buy as many discs, saving you money and space.
  • Rent films and CDs from your local library.
  • Check if your library allows you to download e-books on to your computer or phone.
  • Download songs and films from a reputable website.


  • Swap your unwanted discs with friends and family.
  • Sell your unwanted discs on a website such as Amazon.
  • Cut damaged discs into assorted shapes and make decorations from them.
  • Use damaged discs as coasters.


There are lots of organisations that recycle CDs and DVDs. A simple internet search on ‘recycling cds’ will give you a list of organisations. Usually you will need to pay the postage.