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What is Electronic Waste (E-Waste)?
Electronic waste, often known as e-waste, refers to electronic items that have become undesirable, non-functional, or obsolete, or have reached the end of their useful life.
Why Should You Repair or Recycle Your Electronics?
According to the Environmental Protection Agency, only 15 to 20 percent of e-waste gets recycled; the remainder ends up in landfills, incinerators, or is illegally shipped to developing nations. Because most electrical components contain hazardous substances such as lead, beryllium, polyvinyl chloride, and mercury, this is risky. All of these substances are extremely hazardous to both the environment and humans. This is why properly recycling your devices is critical.
What Happens to Electronics After They have Been Recycled?
Electronics can be properly discarded by a trusted electronics recycler. Users can search for a trusted recycler near them by entering their state and city on the E-cycling Central website. Many electronic recyclers also provide pickup services and collecting events.
There are additional ways to ensure that your old electronics are recycled by a respectable company. It is crucial to verify that your electronics recycler looks to determine if outdated equipment may be repurposed before selling it for parts. Reuse is always better for the environment and extends the life of devices by a couple of years.
Reputable recyclers will utilize mechanical shredding and a high-tech separation mechanism to extract the useful metals, which can then be transferred to a smelter if refurbishment is not an option.
Electronics Recycling Certifications from R2 and E-Stewards
There are two standards for recycling electronics. Each standard also includes certification programs that the recycler must complete and maintain. The e-Stewards Standard for Responsible Recycling and Reuse of Electronic Equipment, also known as e-Stewards, and the Responsible Recycling (R2) Practices, often known as R2, are two different standards. If an electronics recycler has one of these qualifications, they are usually more reliable than those that do not.
Do not Forget to Delete Your Information
Make sure to wipe your data from your computer or cell phone before recycling or donating it. You must do more than simply delete the files; you must “wipe” the hard disc so that no one else can access it. Your recycler may do this for you or charge you an extra fee if you request it. There are other free software programs available for download that will overwrite your data.
The Myth Around Batteries
Batteries made of nickel-cadmium should not be thrown away! They are made of toxic components that might affect the environment, and they need to be recycled as well.
What Can E-Waste Be Used For?
Gold is used in circuit boards, copper is used for connective lines, and silver is used in solder for each electronic equipment. When these electronic items are correctly recycled, the valuable materials are sold for profit and used to create new products. Cell phone batteries, for example, can be used to create new cellphones and batteries, while zinc and aluminum from laptops and tablets can be utilized to create metal plates, jewelry, automobiles, and art.
E-waste pickup teams are responsible for taking the waste off your hands and ensuring proper disposal so you don’t have to worry about it.