The Most Harmful Electronics to Dump and Why You Should Recycle Them
If you had to make a list of the most pressing concerns facing the environment today, electronic waste (or e-waste) would undoubtedly be right at the top. According to Earth911.com, people in the United States alone throw away approximately 9.4 million TONS of old electronics each year. Out of the billions of dollars that we collectively spend on gadgets like smartphones, tablets, laptop computers and more, only 12.5% of that e-waste is ever properly recycled – the rest often sits in landfills, doing more harm than good to our precious planet.
There are a few key types of electronics that you should definitely make an effort to recycle, as opposed to just letting them sit unused, or worse, throwing them away without a second thought.
One of the most harmful types of electronics to dispose of improperly is also one of the most prevalent in our lives – smartphones. Part of the reason why smartphones have become notorious for generating huge amounts of e-waste has to do with the way the industry functions – a new “latest and greatest” model comes out every year, leaving last year’s leftovers to sit unused in a desk drawer (or worse, at the top of a landfill).
According to the Environmental Protection Agency, precious metals like copper, silver, gold and palladium in smartphones can ALL be reused in newer products if their owners take the time to recycle them properly. For every one million smartphones that are recycled, for example, an incredible 35,275 pounds of copper can be successfully recovered.
If you want to put things in terms of dollars and cents, based on disposal rates Americans throw away roughly $60 million per year by improperly disposing of their old smartphones thanks to the gold and silver inside each one!
In our rush to be able to work wherever we need, whenever we need to, laptop computers have become an increasingly popular component in the world of business in particular. Unfortunately, this is also one of the most harmful types of electronics to dump due to the components inside that could harm the environment if they end up in a trash heap, along with the wasted precious metals like palladium used to generate the sensitive electrical contacts inside.
The EPA estimates that recycling just one million laptop computers will save the same amount of electricity that 3,657 average United States homes use in a single YEAR.
Another one of the most harmful types of electronics to improperly dispose of is one that we tend not to think too much about unless something goes wrong – your computer monitor. According to the EPA, roughly 595,000 tons of computer monitors were disposed of in 2010 alone. That breaks down to roughly 35,800,000 different monitors across the country.
While about 194,000 tons of those monitors did end up being properly recycled, an incredible 401,000 tons were not. This means that approximately 24,100,000 monitors can be found harming the environment in landfills from coast to coast.
At Bass Computer Recycling, we specialize in total solutions for all of your surplus electronics disposal and IT asset management needs. Whether you’re in desperate need of secure data destruction or just want to make sure you’re recycling your old electronics in a way that won’t harm the environment, we’re here to help. To find out more about services that include but are not limited to things like electronics recycling, hard drive shredding, IT asset disposal and more, don’t delay – contact us today.