Electronic waste is one of the fastest growing parts of waste disposal in the developed and developing world. Consider this one fact: by 2018, over one third of the world’s population will own a smartphone. That’s over 2.5 billion smartphones, each with an average lifespan of only 21 months. While sales of traditional PCs have been on the decline, computers are still produced and sold in quantities exceeding 250 million per year. Then there are tablets, laptops, two-in-ones, and electronic reading devices like Kindles, as well as peripherals like printers, cables, modems, routers, and battery backups. The parade of electronics is both never ending and, quite often, short-lived.
10 Things to Know About e-Waste
- According to an article on TheBalance.com, 41.8 million tons of e-waste was generated worldwide in 2014.
- Electronic Waste is expected to grow annually by 4-5%.
- Old computers and electronics contain toxic substances like lead, cadmium, and mercury.
- Data, like your personal information, can still be recovered from dead, damaged, and broken devices.
- By one 2014 estimate, 85% of e-waste ended in a landfill or incinerator, putting toxins into the environment.
- A large amount of e-waste need not be wasted at all, but is ready to refurbish and resale.
- According to Earth911.com, one ton of circuit boards can contain over 40 times more gold than one metric ton of ore.
- Many electronics contain rare earth elements (REEs) like cadmium, lanthanum, and samarium.
- It is estimated that Americans alone throw away phones containing over $60 million in precious metals each year.
- As of 2016, only 12.5% of all e-waste was being recycled.
Electronic Recycling is the Answer
Almost 100% of electronic waste is recyclable or reusable.
Recycling 1 million laptops would save the equivalent of the annual energy use of over 3,500 US households. According to an article on DoSomething.org, for every one million cell phones recycled, it is possible to recover 35,274 lbs of copper, 772 lbs of silver, 75 lbs of gold, and 33 lbs of palladium.
At Protec recycling, we strive to meet the highest levels of professionalism in electronics recycling. We are safer, guaranteeing the destruction of personal data on old electronics. We are accountable, being fully insured and monitored with 24/7 video surveillance. And our staff has extensive knowledge and experience in the handling of electronic waste.
Call us today at 205-549-2120.