A solution tackling the issue of recycling refrigeration appliances

Press Release |

On average, a poorly recycled refrigeration appliance generates one ton of greenhouse gases

MONTRÉAL, May 16, 2022 – GoRecycle has been in operation for the last year and is now ready to announce its official launch. The non-profit organization represents some 150 retailers and manufacturers who have joined forces to ensure the responsible recycling of household appliances in Québec, with a focus on refrigeration and air conditioning units because of the environmental issues they raise.


Inadequate recycling of refrigerated household appliances in Québec is a real environmental challenge that is largely unknown to the public. When poorly recycled, refrigeration and air conditioning appliances generate hundreds of thousands of tons of greenhouse gases (GHGs) annually. GoRecycle estimates that over 300,000 appliances are improperly recycled every year in Québec, releasing over 300,000 tons of GHGs. This represents nearly 100,000 additional cars driving on Québec’s roads per year.

The organization was founded to ensure the responsible recycling of household appliances, with a focus on refrigeration and air conditioning appliances, a role that had not been filled by any official entity until now. GoRecycle is the only organization recognized by RECYC-QUÉBEC that offers free recycling in compliance with Québec regulations.

“Most people are not aware that responsible recycling of refrigeration and air conditioning appliances is one of the most effective ways to combat climate change,” says Jules Foisy Lapointe, General Manager of GoRecycle. “Refrigerators and air conditioners left at the curb are mainly recycled for their metals, but in most cases, their gases leak into the atmosphere, their refrigerant oils are released into the environment and the other recyclable materials are not recovered. This creates significant amounts of greenhouse gases and ozone-depleting substances. It might appear harmless but in fact, each appliance abandoned on the street releases about a ton of greenhouse gases. Bringing your household refrigeration appliances to one of GoRecycle’s drop-off locations to ensure responsible recycling is a simple solution that has a huge impact in reducing GHGs and waste,” he concludes.

In 2021 alone, GoRecycle collected 83,809 refrigeration and air conditioning appliances, preventing 87,092 tons of GHG emissions.


GoRecycle’s main priority is collecting and recycling refrigerating, freezing and air conditioning equipment, the most polluting appliances: refrigerators, freezers, refrigerating cellars, wine coolers, water dispensers, portable or window air conditioners and dehumidifiers. Only GoRecycle and its partners Puresphera and RIVRA ensure the proper treatment of the various gases and blowing agents in refrigeration appliances.

“The government now requires manufacturers, distributors and retailers of household appliances and air conditioning to manage the products they market throughout their life cycle,” said Benoit Charette, Minister of the Environment and the Fight against Climate Change, Minister Responsible for the Fight against Racism and Minister Responsible for the Laval Region. By bringing their household appliances to a GoRecycle partner drop-off point, people ensure that the appliances are to be fully and responsibly recycled in Québec. Congratulations and much success to GoRecycle and its partners! I invite all Quebecers to bring their old appliances to GoRecycle.”


The general public has an active role to play to make GoRecycle’s success possible and for household appliances to be recycled responsibly. In partnership with cities and municipalities across Québec as well as recycling service providers that comply with regulatory requirements, the organization has set up more than 260 drop-off locations where people can dispose of their outdated appliances for free, which are then collected and brought to GoRecycle’s network of authorized recycling partners.

Appliance retailers are also involved in GoRecycle’s recycling process. Most offer at-home pick up to consumers when they purchase a new appliance.

“Businesses are at the heart of the solution in bringing together both the  economy and the environment. This recycling program for household appliances and air conditioners improves the management of their components, avoids waste, recovers halocarbons and fights climate change,” says Sonia Gagné, President and CEO of RECYC-QUÉBEC. “This approach makes producers responsible for discarded products they market and accountable for ensuring optimal recycling and reuse. It’s a fine example of an economy that is becoming increasingly circular,” she concludes.


GoRecycle is also launching a major communication campaign to raise awareness among Quebecers about the consequences of inadequately recycling refrigeration and air conditioning appliances, and to invite them to join in this collective effort by taking action and informing those around them. The campaign will be rolled out on social media and online starting today. GoRecycle is also taking advantage of the upcoming moving day on July 1st, when many get rid of their household appliances, to raise awareness about responsible recycling and encourage Quebecers to help fight climate change.


GoRecycle is a collective non-profit organization recognized by RECYC-QUÉBEC that represents retailers, distributors and manufacturers who have joined forces to improve the recycling of household appliances in Québec. With more than 260 drop-off locations in Québec, GoRecycle finances and manages collection and recycling activities. GoRecycle is the only organization recognized by RECYC-QUÉBEC that ensures the recycling of certain refrigerated household appliances, such as refrigerators and air conditioners. Its mission is to support household appliance recycling management practices by implementing programs that are both efficient and good for the environment and provide compliance solutions for the industry.