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The Impacts of Irresponsible E-Waste Disposal

What Are the Impacts of Irresponsible E-Waste Disposal?

Every time you toss an old cell phone, laptop, iPod, or other electronic device into the trash, do you know where it ultimately ends up? These items end up in our landfills where the toxic metals and chemicals contained within them eventually leach into the soil as they degrade.

While the toxic chemicals of just one cell phone might not seem like a lot, consider the environmental impact when more than 100 million cell phones are dumped, such as what happens in the U.S. each and every year. As if that’s not enough, consider also that in the U.S. alone, we throw out more than 112,000 desktops and laptops every day (about 41.1 million a year) and 20 million TVs a year. And, in a recent report released by the United Nations, the amount of e-waste produced globally over the next decade is expected to grow by an incredible 500%.

What Happens When E-Waste Enters the Landfill?

Whenever a piece of electronic waste enters one of our landfills, the elements and damage caused by trash turnover eventually breaks the outer shell of the device. Over time, as the device continues to break down in the landfill cycle, dangerous chemicals like lead, cadmium, beryllium, mercury, and brominated flame retardants start to leak out of it. And, once these chemicals are exposed to the atmosphere, then can pollute the air, contaminate the soil, and work their way into water sources.

Despite this horrific impact on the global environment and the standards and guidelines put in place to help protect against such environmental abuse, many organizations continue to dispose of their e-waste irresponsibly. And, the result is evident and plainly written in the soil beneath our feet, the water we drink and bathe in, the foods we eat, and the air we breathe. The planet is becoming increasingly toxic and a major part of the problem is irresponsible handling of e-waste.

How to Practice Responsible E-Waste Recycling

Today, there are several avenues available to both individuals and large corporations for handling their unused electronics in a responsible way. For instance, consumers can take advantage of e-waste drop off sites at a variety of different retailers and local or civic resources, such as their township recycling services, local school recycling programs, and others.

For corporations, however, the task is more comprehensive because these organizations usually have several tons of hardware that need to be disposed of. Therefore, large organizations need to partner with a reliable and reputable provider of e-waste recycling and disposal services. To ensure their hardware is being handled properly, organizations need to partner with a provider that is e-Stewards certified. Other certifications to look for include R2 certification and ISO 14001 certification.

Of course, in many cases, the equipment to be recycled still works. In such a case, an organization may be able to have all of its data wiped from the machines and the equipment sold on the secondary market or donated to a good cause. In fact, many companies are even able to obtain a substantial return on their initial investment, simply by practicing ethical recycling and re-use practices.

Contact Liquid Technology Today for Compliant E-Waste Disposal and Recycling

Liquid Technology is an EPA-compliant computer recycler with the experience, resources, and equipment necessary for recycling of all kinds of IT equipment – including servers, storage, networking equipment, laptops, printers, VOIP, Audio/Video equipment and more. We recycle used computer hardware from a variety of name brand manufacturers including: Dell, Cisco, HP, IBM and others.

If you’re looking for a reputable e-waste partner or an IT broker that can help you obtain a higher return for your inventory of unused equipment, reach out to us today by calling our toll-free number, by email or simply complete our quick form and a Liquid Technology Assessment Specialist will promptly respond to you. Feel free to include a spreadsheet of your excess IT equipment to help expedite the process.