America Recycles Day is this Sunday, a day devoted to spreading recycling awareness amongst Americans. Recycling common household products is common in most communities, but most citizens may forget about some of the most important materials to recycle: electronics.
Here are three questions about e-waste recycling to consider this America Recycles Day:
- What are some of the most dangerous every day products Americans use?
- Batteries are part of Americans everyday lives, especially in electronics,. Recycling batteries is one of the most lucrative, but most dangerous aspects of the e-waste recycling business. Batteries contain dangerous, highly reactive chemicals that can cause extreme damage if not properly taken care of. A solution for responsible battery usage is for consumers to use use rechargeable batteries or lead-acid batteries. 60 to 80 percent of the components in a brand-new battery are created from recycled lead and plastics, so new and improved batteries are a green option for electronics.
- Where do recycled electronics go?
- When recycling electronics, it’s imperative to work with a certified vendor that provides the best, most ethical practices in electronics recycling so that devices are properly disposed. Once a certified electronics recycler is in possession of devices, they make the executive decision to refurbish the devices, or break down the devices so that precious materials inside can be used for better purposes. Reusing and recycling materials like copper, gold, and others saves natural resources and reduces mining and processing.
- The amount of e-waste both nationally and worldwide is astonishing. How can I make a difference?
- E-waste comprises 2 percent of America’s trash in landfills and 70 percent of overall toxic waste. Irresponsible electronics dumping can lead to severe health issues for people who live near the dumpsite, as well as permanently altering the environment. These consequences can be avoided by taking the responsible route, and working with a certified ITAD provider to recycle older devices that are no longer in use. Recycling 1 million laptops saves the energy equivalent to the electricity used by 3,657 U.S. homes in a year.
About 20 million to 50 million tons of e-waste is generated each year. This amount of waste is harmful, but with increasing amounts of coverage towards e-waste and the problems it holds, citizens worldwide are learning the most responsible options for device recycling.
This America Recycles Day, remember to look around and see if there are any old devices that aren’t being used. These devices have potential for refurbishment, or to be broken down for further use.