Every 18 to 24 months, the average American gets a new mobile device. Companies are racing to unleash the latest and greatest technology, with recent innovations ranging from 5G service capabilities to fingerprint scanners.
The ever-shortening lifecycle of mobile phones has led to a huge increase in the number of old and unused devices – and unfortunately, they aren’t being handled properly.
Electronics recycling is becoming popular and accepted as an everyday practice, but certain myths and misconceptions continue to plague the industry. Here is a closer look at four of the misconceptions we hear most often and the truths you should know.
1. It’s cheap (recycling electronics)
The old adage “you get what you pay for,” holds true here. All forms of recycling are expensive, but electronics recyclers in particular must constantly invest in technology, maintain rigorous industry certifications and ensure compliance with an ever-changing set of environmental laws.
Just about every business today uses computers and electronics of some type. Many of these items are only in use for three to five years before they become useless from a production standpoint. At the same time, more and more of the latest and hottest electronic devices are being sold to businesses every day. The market is flooded with them. So, what should businesses do with the old stuff that is filling up the back room and taking up badly needed office space?
In our rush to find the latest and greatest version of our electronic gadgets, we are leaving behind tons of e-waste, and this electronic waste is growing at a disturbing pace.
Statistics show that a typical computer has a lifespan of between two and five years. However, with the rate that these items become outdated and obsolete, our items may lose their usefulness within the first six months. We leave our plastics and glass out for recycling, but what about our old monitors, phones, computers and out-of-date cameras?
So, you’ve installed all new computer systems in your company? That’s great, now how are you planning to handle the old systems? These monitors and CRTs you are planning to throw out contain up to four pounds worth of lead. Once a computer has lost its usefulness, it is nothing more than toxic waste.
It is a cold, hard fact in our ever-changing technological landscape. Our various electronic gadgets become obsolete practically as quickly as we buy them. That creates a need to properly recycle these items, so they don’t end up in our landfills, poisoning our earth.
Today’s USB flash drive offers a large amount of storage space at a reasonably low cost. This is good news, except for the fact that our old ones are ending up in the junk drawer, or worse, in our landfills. Never fear, they may be able to live again, and serve a further purpose. Here are some innovative ways to recycle your flash drives.
When your phones, gadgets and computers are no longer of any use, and you pass them on to a new user, that’s reuse. Donating these products can extend the life of these still useful products, and help maximize the resources and energy that went into creating it. Reusing products can allow many outlets to receive products that they otherwise could not afford. These places could be schools, non-profit businesses and families with lesser incomes.
How much electronic waste is in our waste stream?
Consumer electronics like televisions, video equipment, computers, audio equipment, peripherals and phones comprise only 2 percent of our solid waste. Although this is a small percentage, it has been steadily on the rise. In 2007, e-waste accounted for over two million tons.