Electronic waste, also referred to as eScrap or eWaste, is the trash generated from surplus, broken, and obsolete electronic devices. These materials include scrap computers and electronics. In today’s age, technology is constantly evolving with new product announcements.
With new products and updated technology, consumers and businesses upgrade their devices whether they have reached end-of-life status or not. Fortunately, with proper disposal, these materials are recyclable and can be repurposed.
eWaste recycling is the process of recovering material from old devices to use in new products.
What Happens to Scrap Computers and Electronics?
Scrap computers and electronics have various toxic and hazardous chemicals and materials that are released into the environment if not properly disposed of. With a relatively short lifespan, electronics become eWaste at a quick pace.
In fact, it was estimated that close to 500 million unused cell phones are accumulating in people’s homes. Globally, a cell phone is sold to around 25% of the population annually, and every year millions of electronic devices such as mobile phones, TVs, computers, laptops, and tablets reach the end of their useful life. Scrap computers and electronics contain valuable materials, including:
- Fossil fuels
Despite the components, these materials often end up in landfills, and just 12.5% of eWaste is recycled. Recycling scrap computers and electronics allows for recyclers like Interco to collect the valuable materials, save natural resources, reduce pollution, conserve landfill space, and create jobs.
The Benefits of Recycling Scrap Computers and Electronics
According to the EPA, recycling one million laptops can save the energy equivalent of electricity that can run 3,657 U.S. households for a year. Recycling scrap computers and electronics has many benefits including helping to protect the environment. The recycling process reduces the amount of waste added to landfills or burned in incinerator plants. While landfills are designed to contain toxic chemicals, a large quantity results in leakage from the solid waste. As a result, the toxic chemicals contaminate water systems causing harm to the health of those in surrounding population.
Additionally, scrap computers and electronics recycling help cut down on production waste. According to the Electronics TakeBack Coalition, it takes 1.5 tons of water, 530 lbs of fossil fuel, and 40 pounds of chemicals to manufacture a single computer and monitor. 81% of the energy associated with a computer is used during production and not during operation.
Overall, recycling computers and eScrap is vital to keeping as much of these materials out of landfills as possible. Recycling scrap computers and electronics enables recyclers to recover various valuable metals and reduces harmful effects to the environment that improper disposal causes. For recyclers like Interco, recycling these items such as scrap computers and electronics can be very lucrative. Interco purchases components, whole units, peripherals, batteries and boards and precious metal anywhere in North America for recycling. The company continues to lead the way in terms of innovative industrial recycling solutions. To learn more about the services offered by Interco, click here.