How Electronics Recycling is Saving The Earth

There was very little warning about the problems with electronic waste that would eventually affect the world when computers and cell phones were first introduced to the public. The time and cost involved in creating a computer or circuit board in previous decades lead many to think that widespread production would never reach modern levels. There are billions of cell phones in active use around the world right now. Billions of these will be discarded by users in the coming years. This reality has resulted in the need for electronics recycling in most industrialized countries around the world. The proper recycling of all modern electronics benefits the environment in a number of ways.

Reduce Ground Contamination

Laptops, televisions, cell phones and other electronic devices are made from small amounts of hazardous materials like mercury, lead and other metals. Electronics that are discarded with other types of household waste are eventually deposited in a landfill. The hazardous materials that are inside of the electronics will actually leach out of the device as the components are exposed to air and rain. The metals move into the soil and can cause severe contamination. The metals could move through the soil and eventually hit the ground water making it unsafe to drink for residents. Some of the materials break down in very small particles that can be carried by the wind into surrounding neighborhoods where the dust will cause long-term health problems. Electronics recycling stops hazardous materials from contaminating the ground in and around landfills.

Conserve Resources

Many of the materials that are used to make the circuits and other components in an electronic device can actually be extracted and then used again. Metals can be melted and reformed into new components. Certain parts of the outer shell of the device or the screen can be reused as well. The metal that is inside of connectors or wires is recyclable. This helps to conserve the natural resources on the planet. Recycling electronics lowers the need to mine aggressively for more rare earth elements or other valuable substances used in modern manufacturing.

recycling

Photo source: http://www.flickr.com/photos/matthewsim/5657481403/

Lower Waste In Landfills

Televisions, computers and kitchen appliances that are not recycled are dumped in landfills with other types of waste that cannot be incinerated or otherwise processed. The plastics, metals and other materials that are used to create electronics do not decompose in any reasonable amount of time. The massive amount of consumer electronics that are disposed of every year would easily take up all of the available space in most landfills in a very short period of time. This is one reason why many countries have instituted strict recycling laws for electronics. Recycling allows landfills to be used responsibly for other forms of waste that will decompose over time.

Lower Energy Usage

Energy usage around the world is becoming a major issue because of the increasing population of many countries. Electronics recycling helps to reduce the amount of energy that is consumed during the production of new products by a significant amount. This means that less energy is needed at nearly every point in the production and supply chain when creating new electronics. This triggers a reduction in the number of harmful pollutants that are released into the atmosphere every year from power plants that burn fossil fuels. It also makes more energy available to power homes and businesses in the area.

These points were brought to you on behalf of Artex Environmental, the leading facility providing proper electronics recycling in Toronto & surrounding areas.

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