10 Reasons to recycle or reuse electronic gadgets
Posted: Jan 01, 2016
When you upgrade to the latest smartphone model or newest tablet design do you know what you should do with your old model to be environmentally responsible? If you think it is OK to dispose of it with your household rubbish then you need to think again. Here are some compelling reasons why you should either reuse or recycle any waste electrical and electronic equipment (WEEE) instead.
1. Minimise the amount of e-waste polluting our planet – By reusing or recycling your electronic items you are helping to eliminate e-waste.
2. Someone else could make use of your gadget – What you consider electronic waste could be used as it is by someone else; items such as old style televisions, computers or mobile phones may still function so could be donated to someone less fortunate. There are many schools, charities and other organisations that would appreciate your working items and you would also not be contributing to the ever growing mountain of e-waste in landfill sites.
3. Save money on your new items – Some retailers and manufacturers offer discounts when you return an old device because this helps them meet their legal targets under the WEEE regulations for recycling. But it also means you can save some cash.
- Secure your personal data – If you don't dispose of your electronic devices safely you could be exposing yourself to the risk of identity fraud. Many people believe they have deleted their personal details from laptops, smartphones and tablets but that data is still accessible to those with the know-how. Instead use a specialist data wiping service.
- Prevent contamination of the land and water supplies – The more WEEE that ends up in landfill the worse the problem of toxic substances like cadmium, lead or mercury leaking into water supplies or polluting the land and preventing crops being grown around landfill sites, which can destroy traditional communities.
- Prevent precious metals being wasted – If you discard an electronic device, you are also throwing away precious metal. A thousand mobile phones contain 15kg of copper 340g of silver and 34g of gold.
- Less waste producing new items – Not only does recycling or reuse help to reduce e-waste on our planet, but it also minimises the waste produced mining new metals and minerals and saves the energy required to extract the raw materials from the ground
- Recycling is easy – Recycling your electrical and electronic items is easier than it ever has been as local councils are obliged to meet certain levels of recycling for particular items. So we can all decrease the amount of waste electrical and electronic equipment (WEEE) that our community is producing.
- Conserve our limited energy resources – If you recycle a single mobile phone you are conserving the equivalent amount of materials that could be used to power a laptop for over 3 days. That is a sobering thought.
- Avoid the need for more landfill sites – Landfill space is required for items that cannot be re-used or recycled but if we are filling it with recyclable goods then we are limiting space for true waste.
The author has written and published articles on a wide range of topics including Small Business Advice, Tax and Accounting, Interior Design, House Renovation and Project Management.