Did you know that between 20 – 50 million metric tons of electronic equipment are disposed of each year? Yes, items such as monitors, TVs, computer parts, barcode scanners, and mobile phones find their way into landfills because people simply don’t know what to do with them.
While we’re all excited about new and improved products, these do tend to make older equipment redundant even when there’s nothing wrong with them.
What should we know about electronic waste, and how can we manage it responsibly?
Can I Recycle Electronic Waste?
The short answer is yes, you can. And you should. There are more South African companies joining to move toward responsible electronic waste management than ever and any one of them can help you to keep your office free from dead devices.
The environmental benefits of e-waste recycling are significant. As electronics break down in landfills, they release some pretty nasty toxins which leach into the soil and the surrounding water sources. These poisons damage plant and animal life and have been found to cause some serious illnesses in affected humans.
Another interesting point to note is that electronic waste can be a lucrative side hustle for the entrepreneurs out there. One source noted that Americans discard around $60 million of gold and silver each year when turfing their old cell phones.
Besides recycling these older devices, you may also consider donating them to youth centres, charities, or schools that would, were sure, be grateful for laptops, computers, or phones in working order. Just because they’re of no more use to your employees, doesn’t make them useless to others less fortunate than ourselves.
So, if you operate a responsible business looking to reduce its carbon footprint, why not consider electronic waste recycling alongside your existing paper, plastic, and glass management?