When it comes to the process of Reduce, Reuse, Recycle, every effort counts. You can leave your mark this Earth Day by making electronics recycling a part of your work day.
Many business throw out their old phones. This increases landfill waste and can put hazardous materials into our environment.
This isn’t necessary. Your business can do its part this year by e-cycling the hardware it no longer needs.
You can visit the Environmental Protection Agency and the E-Cycling Central for recycling resources and to find out where to recycle your used hardware. Keep reading this blog for a brief look at our take on the matter.
Why Recycle Your Electronics
Two primary effects happen when you recycle rather than throw away goods and materials: You can reuse parts of the recycled material, and you can limit the creation of new materials that would replace those parts.
The Reduce, Reuse, Recycle slogan places “recycle” at the end of the list. However, recycling can lead to both re-use of materials and reduction of processes like mining.
After you take your old phones to an electronics recycler (see the E-Cycling Central link above), your local recycling center can make sure the components of your hardware are taken apart.
The EPA notes in its recycling information page: “For every million cell phones we recycle, 35 thousand pounds of copper, 772 pounds of silver, 75 pounds of gold and 33 pounds of palladium can be recovered.”
The individual desk phone or smartphone you recycle will contribute to that total. Those materials can be reused in the creation of new products.
Moreover, the EPA says, you can visit local retailers like Best Buy and Staples or contact brands such as HP, Spring, LG, Vizio, Samsung, Sony, Xerox, and TCL to recycle your phones. These businesses may partner with e-cycle shops or could find avenues to reuse the devices directly.
Broken devices can make their way to a recycling center, while used or unwanted (but operational) devices could be picked up by other individuals and businesses happy to use older hardware. You can even contact local thrift stores like Goodwill to connect buyers with used hardware.
At VirtualPBX, we do our part by promoting the use of refurbished hardware. For businesses on a tight budget, a pickup of discounted used phones supports their needs as an office while both supporting our virtual phone system business and reducing the demand for new, equally effective hardware.
When hardware is reused, it reduces the need to create new goods and develop new materials.
Your electronics recycling efforts, for example, can impact the mining industry by limiting consumption of products that require specific materials.
The EPA’s statistics regarding savings of copper, silver, gold, and palladium mean that those pounds of materials don’t need to be mined. This impacts manpower, machinery fuel, and time lost when old materials are simply buried – requiring that additional resources be used to dig for more.
Get Involved in Electronics Recycling
The ideas we’ve covered in this article simply recycle what environmentalists have been saying for years.
It’s easy to get involved. Every efforts helps.
Electronics recycling is as simple as finding a local recycling center, electronics business, or used goods store and delivering your unwanted devices. You can find further tips and recycling locations for your state in our Hardware Recycling Guide.
Take one hour out of your work day this Earth Day. Recycle those phones and routers that sit in your storage room. It will feel good, and you’ll make a positive impact on the environment.