Electronic Waste Disposal
E-Waste (electronics waste), which is also known as “Brown Goods” includes: TVs, Computers, Tablets, Stereo Systems, cameras, cell phones, and gaming systems (including handheld devices).
According to the Iowa Department of Natural Resources:
- Over 100 million computers, monitors and televisions become obsolete each year in the US.
- About 300 million other consumer electronics such as cell phones and DVD players become obsolete each year in the US.
- E-Waste accounts for 40 percent of the lead and 75 percent of the heavy metals found in landfills.
- Consumers have, on average, two or three obsolete computers in their garages, closets or storage spaces.
- Computers contain valuable metals including gold, silver, palladium, platinum, aluminum and copper.
Some of the e-waste materials contain hazardous chemicals (phosphorus which contains lead) Lead is dangerous to human health and shouldn’t be discarded into landfills.
So, what should we do with E-Waste, when we decide to upgrade, or the equipment is no longer working or useful?
Here are some options:
Donate. If the equipment is still working, and is just outdated, there are many charitable organizations whom accept used electronics. Just be sure to clean the equipment of all personal files.
Upgrade. Sometimes with added memory and updated software, an electronic product can be as good as new. Consider upgrading before disposing and causing un-necessary waste.
Sell or Trade. Selling your old item to someone who could use it on sites like craigslist, or ebay could earn you some extra cash toward the purchase of your new item. Also, several manufacturers offer trade-in credits!
Recycle. Electronic recycle companies salvage working components and market the metals, plastic and glass. This reduces the volume and toxicity of waste going to Iowa landfills as well as saving energy and conserving natural resources.
Midwest Electronic Recovery and Recycletronics are two companies in Iowa that we know of, and of course if you rent a Carrier Container Company Roll of Dumpster, we will correctly dispose of your electronics for a fee of $15 per item.