Over 59 million tons of electronic waste (e-waste) were produced globally in 2019. Only 17% of this e-waste is recycled properly. Many companies and individuals skip the essential step of recycling their computers and other electronics because they believe that the process is too expensive, too difficult, or unnecessary.
Computer Recycling, a company with a national customer reach, shares the six steps that your company can take if you want to recycle your e-waste responsibly.
The Global Problem of E-Waste
The statistics cited above paint a grim picture of the volume of e-waste that is improperly (and often illegally) disposed of. E-waste can cause environmental damage since it contains hazardous materials that leach into the soil or water supply. These materials (notably, lead, mercury & chromium) can cause reproductive difficulties and developmental issues in humans & wildlife, as well as contribute to potential birth defects.
When companies neglect to dispose of their e-waste properly, they also are preventing useful materials like plastic, glass, and copper from being repurposed. If these materials are recycled, fewer raw materials are needed to assemble new machines. Electronics recycling could potentially reduce the amount of mining needed, helping to reach the goal of a cleaner, greener planet.
What is Considered E-Waste?
Electronic waste comes in many forms. Most people know that obsolete computers and smartphones fall into the category. In addition, anything with a plug or a battery that has reached its “end of life” can be classified as such. This includes small household appliances, televisions, copiers, and fax machines among many other types of products.
Electronics Recycling Laws
More than half of the United States is covered by laws mandating proper e-waste recycling. Those who are found to be in violation of these laws may face significant fines as well as reputation damage that could render operation of their business unsustainable. Working with a reputable e-waste firm in Computer Recycling is one way to ensure that you will be in compliance with local ordinances governing proper electronics recycling.
Five Steps Toward Recycling E-Waste
Here are the five steps that your company can take toward responsibly recycling its electronic waste:
1. Assess Your Recyclables
Before you start the recycling process, it is good to fully account for the electronic equipment you will need to dispose of. Collect a rough count of all the computers, monitors, peripherals, and hardware you need to recycle, along with batteries and fluorescent lamps. Televisions and small appliances should also be included.
2. Understand What Can and Cannot Be Recycled
Most e-waste can be recycled as long as you find an experienced full-service recycler & data destruction specialist like Computer Recycling. It is especially important to recycle everything with a circuit board since this component contains a high percentage of heavy metals compared to the rest of the machine.
3. Proper, Thorough Data Destruction Is Imperative
This is perhaps the most crucial step to preserving your company’s data security. Data on computer hard drives must be fully destroyed in order to ensure the safety of your customers & employees, as well as the integrity of your organization.
If a hacker obtains your data, they could gain access to sensitive information like Social Security numbers, birthdates, and bank account data. Why put your company, employees & clients at risk? Trust the data security experts at Computer Recycling to ensure that your private information will never end up where it doesn’t belong. By offering US Department of Defense (DOD) standard wipes and/or physical destruction of all drives that enter their facility, they are your best line of defense against a potential data breach.
4. Find a Reputable Electronics Recycling Company
Finding a responsible company to recycle your electronic waste can be difficult, but there are many criteria that you should follow when making your choice.
The first point that many business owners do not consider is adequate on-site security. While the machines are waiting to be recycled, the facility that accepts them needs to be secure so that data thieves cannot access your information.
Environmental responsibility and worker safety should also be taken into consideration. Knowing how to properly recycle these materials without endangering workers is a sought-after quality.
With facilities under 24 hour surveillance, certifications that hold them to a higher standard, and over two decades of experience, Computer Recycling is the trustworthy destination to recycle your obsolete computers & electronics.
5. Arrange for Pickup
Arranging for pickup is the final step. After the obsolete equipment is picked up, your company can move ahead with a clear conscience.
Doing the Right Thing for the Environment and Data Security
Electronics recycling is a must in today’s world, where outdated devices are being improperly disposed of at a level that should be of great concern to us all. Computer Recycling can help your organization assess your recycling needs and take care of your machines in a responsible way.