Biggest Reasons for Recycling E-Waste

– Teresa Madaleno:

From smartphones and laptops to televisions and household appliances, we are living with an incredible amount of electronics. While they are developed to make our lives more convenient, they also put our environment at risk. In this blog we look at the specific reasons we must recycle as much e-waste as we can.

What is e-waste?

Electronic waste is any electronic or electrical equipment that is outdated and has been discarded. This could be broken items or whole pieces of equipment. Also, when stock is unsold in stores it can become e-waste.

Four reasons to recycle e-waste

  • Reduces greenhouse gas emissions – If we keep manufacturing new electronics to replace outdated electronics, we are using up a lot of energy and raw materials, which means we are generating higher carbon emissions. Recycling helps reduce greenhouse gas emissions (GHG).
  • Protects natural resources – Natural resources are finite. When we mine for metals, it depletes these resources and at the same time leads to environmental destruction. Recycling e-waste enables us to reclaim valuable materials so we can reduce the draining of our natural reserves. Sparta Group along with its partners at the University of Ottawa are close to publishing a report on their efforts to develop a safe, efficient process for recycling lithium-ion batteries.
  • Prevents toxic materials from entering the environment – Electronic waste contains a lot of hazardous substances, including mercury, lead and cadmium. It also contains flame retardants. These hazardous materials can leach into soil and water, putting humans and wildlife at risk of developing health problems. When we recycle e-waste, we are diverting it from out ecosystems.
  • Creates jobs – The recycling process creates jobs. These jobs stem from the collection, transportation, sorting and processing of e-waste. Sparta Group’s e-waste facility in Toronto has had to increase staff significantly over the last couple of years to be able to handle recycling of e-waste for some of the country’s most well-known brands.

For e-waste recycling to work effectively, everyone needs to commit to responsible disposal of their electronics. ERS is a B2B operation, but any gadget or electrical appliance a person buys will be outdated sooner rather than later. What should you do? Before you get rid of electronics make sure you check with the manufacturer to see if they will take them back. Many take-back manufacturers are Sparta’s ERS customers, so you can be assured your waste is being recycled. An bonus for manufacturers is that ERS generates verified greenhouse gas credits that can help those manufacturers reduce their carbon footprint.

more posts here