[Editors note: This post was originally published in March 2014 and has been completely revamped and updated for accuracy and comprehensiveness.]
The holidays are a great time for electronics retailers but not so great for our bank accounts. And our landfills.
That's because that is the time of year when most folks update their old cell phones, desktops, laptops and televisions. And when they do that they end up with a massive amount of electronic waste, or e-waste.
So, what happens to all of that e-waste? There are three options: Keep it, toss it or recycle it.
On the "keep it" side of things, if you have a business, you might be accumulating numbers of out-dated printers, fax machines and computers. But they are just taking up valuable space in your office.
As least you have the foresight not to "toss them."
Unfortunately, this isn't true for most waste electronics. In fact, it's estimated that up to 50 million tons of e-waste is tossed out every year and less than 20 percent of that pile is reused or recycled. That's a number that is growing annually as both the population and the output of electronics grows exponentially.
How bad is this e-waste?
E-Waste Can Be Deadly
Even though e-waste only makes up of two percent of the municipal waste stream in America, those items are among the most toxic. Keep in mind that all these electronic devices and components are perfectly safe for you to use in your home. But if they are broken apart or left to deteriorate and rust, a toxic variety of elements can seep out.
What can be in these seemingly harmless devices to cause such concern?
Among the major offenders are lead, mercury, arsenic, cadmium, chromium and barium. All of these heavy metals and chemicals are toxic when they come in contact with people, plants and animals.
And having these toxins piling up in landfills creates potential time-bombs waiting to seep into the groundwater.
That's a toxic stew no one wants to add to. But it's easy to avoid adding this scenario to your own carbon footprint. You simply have to make sure that your e-waste is disposed of in a responsible manner.
But how do you do that?
That's where a company like Junk King comes in. We understand the value of recycling and we've made it our number one priority to recycle the vast majority of everything that is collected by our Junk King crews.
And we are especially big on e-waste!
E-Waste Recycling as a Better Option
By placing e-waste into the right recycling program, you're not only helping the planet but you're providing a solid boost to the economy, as well.
A study published by the International Data Corporation found that e-waste recycling provided work for 30,000 full-time employees and had contributed around $5.2 billion to the U.S. economy since 2002.
Those numbers will only grow higher as more new electronic devices come onto the market. As it stands, we're replacing our cell phones every 22 months and our computers every two years. Add it all up and the e-waste we throw out each year could fill up to 60 landfills!
Recycling not only allows the precious metals and other reusable materials to be recovered from old devices and components, but it keeps the toxic elements from ending up in the ground or the water.
When Junk King takes in a piece of electronic waste, they will either donate that item to a charity it it's still usable, or make sure it is dropped off at a proper dismantling facility. In addition, there are many charities that specialize in refurbishing e-waste. Those pieces can then be sold for support the charity or donated to people in need.
On the dismantling side, every electronic has to be painstakingly taken apart and the components sorted. Only then can those pieces find their way back into the system for reuse.
That's the responsible way and that's what Junk King strives to accomplish with every junk removal appointment.
Professional Junk Removal for Your E-Waste
Junk King provides an efficient, safe and eco-friendly e-waste removal service so you don’t need to worry about the pick up or disposal of those old items.
Not only that, we also ensure that your old electronics end up in the right place. Whether it goes to a charity if the electronics are still functioning, or to a recycling facility, we make your e-waste is disposed of in an eco-friendly way.
We remove almost all types of e-waste, including:
- Copy Machines