June 19, 2019
Why are e-waste recycling best practices so confusing?
If you’ve ever asked yourself that, you’re not alone.
Even though climate change is pushing onward at an alarming rate, people still don’t recycle as much as they should. Climate change is one of the world’s most pressing issues. However, a disproportionate number of millennials are apathetic towards recycling. The average consumer sees recycling in general as an enigma.
E-waste is almost 100% recyclable. So why does everyone think it’s so hard?
Today we’re sharing a few e-waste recycling best practices so that you can safely, easily, and responsibly dispose of your e-waste items.
Trust us, it’s easier than you think.
You can’t just throw your e-waste in the blue recycling bin. We know we said it was easier than you thought but it’s not that easy. Most e-waste requires a specialized bin. The disposal routes can vary greatly depending on where you live and which programs have been established within your community.
E-waste (which generally includes small electronics such as phones, tablets, laptops, and printer ink cartridges) contain materials that are hazardous and potentially dangerous to the environment. Companies, like Planet Green, will buy your empty ink cartridges to remanufacture them so they can be used again or recycled in an environmentally safe manner.
Earth911.com is an incredible recycling resource. All it takes is a simple search for an item you’d like to recycle. Choose your city and state, and it will give you a list of places near you that can help you recycle your e-waste items.
Recycling e-waste doesn’t start with where to responsibly dispose of electronic waste. It truly starts with being a mindful consumer. Ask yourself if you really need that new edition iPhone or the laptop with a slightly more impressive screen size.
Technology is in a very exciting place right now. Computers and phones can do things that we never could have imagined years ago. We get it – it’s fun to have the hottest new updates and hardware. But before you purchase, ask yourself if it’s really worth it.
Unfortunately, there are no federal laws when it comes to limiting or disposing of e-waste in the United States. Meaning that most of the responsibility is in the hands of the consumer – that’s you. You’re reading this so you’re on the right track but it doesn’t stop here. There is a plethora of valuable information out there that can help you and your community to recycle e-waste ethically and safely.
Search for companies and stores that provide assistance with donating and recycling electronics by visiting EPA.gov. You can search by the type of device and even brand, to see which companies will help you with recycling electronics. Quick, easy and simple.
You can also search for local e-cycling centers by turning to your state, county or local government. Visit any official websites and look into their recycling programs to see if there are eligible donation centers.
It’s not just about keeping our environment safe – your personal information could also be at risk. The Ponemon Institute estimated that over 70% of data breaches were the result of discarded technology. When you’re disposing of e-waste items such as a cell phone or a laptop, make sure you sweep and clear any personal data.
There is nothing truly worse than a slow computer or a cracked phone screen. Consider getting things repaired before recycling or disposing of them. Take to Google and find a laptop or smartphone repair company near you.
Beyond bringing items in for recycling, donating your old electronics which are still in good condition to a friend, family member, elementary school, or local charity is beneficial and worthwhile too.
Don’t forget about all of the peripheral items and accessories when you’re recycling electronics. That includes power cords and plugs, extra batteries or memory cards, printer ink, and ink cartridges, and all the rest.
Anybody can start putting the above e-waste recycling best practices to good use and begin making a positive impact both on the local community, and the global stage. Recycling electronic waste is something which everyone should consider important, and with so many easy options available these days, there’s no reason to put it off any longer.
Did you know that you can recycle your inkjets and raise funds for your non-profit, school, or community organization?
The fundraising recycling program offered by Planet Green Recycle is a fun, easy, and effective way to raise funds for schools, religious organizations, sports teams and non-profit organizations.
Reach out to our fundraising success team at 800-377-1093 and get your organization started with Planet Green Recycle today!
*As of March 1st, 2020, Planet Green Recycle will no longer be accepting small electronics or e-waste items. We will only be accepting ink cartridges.