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    Electronic waste - the truth -

    burgundia
    burgundia

    Posts : 5519
    Join date : 2010-04-09
    Location : Poland

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    Post  burgundia on Sun Mar 11, 2012 9:57 am

    http://www.occupyforanimals.org/electronic-waste--the-truth.html

    Electronic waste is just about any type of waste from electronics, including cell phones, computers, tablets, and more. In some countries, throwing away eWaste so that it ends up in the dumps is actually illegal. This is because electronics in landfills can have a hugely negative impact on the environment and, by extension, society at large.

    You’d think that throwing a computer on the trash heap wouldn’t be that much more harmful than throwing away a bunch of plastic bottles, but it actually can be. The main problem is that many components of electronics include potentially dangerous metals and toxic chemicals. Over time, these things can leach into the environment around landfills. When toxic heavy metals get into the groundwater, they can wreak untold havoc on the environment and humans who live nearby!

    In fact, it’s estimated that 70% of heavy metals in landfills right now come from eWaste!

    Add this to the fact that eWaste is made up largely of materials that don’t break down over time, which means the landfills get more and more crowded so that we eventually have to open up new ones, and you have a huge problem on your hands.

    The problem with electronic waste is not a new one, but it’s getting worse. In 2006-2007, the Environmental Protection Agency estimated that about 50 million tons of eWaste is discarded every year and that Americans throw out about 100 million phones and 30 million computers each and every year. Those are even older estimates, so the problem is worse than that in 2011!

    Why is eWaste becoming a larger and larger problem?
    For one thing, electronics companies are into this thing called “planned obsolescence.” It basically means that electronics like computers and cell phones aren’t meant to hold up for more than a couple of years, so that you have to replace them almost constantly. If that’s not enough, just think about how rapidly technology evolves and how we’re culturally primed to get the next new thing that hits the stores – even if the last new thing in our own homes is only a few months old!

    What can you do about it?
    There are lots of different ways you can help electronic waste be less of a problem in our world. Right now, it’s estimated that only 15-20% of electronic waste is recycled, which is absolutely tragic. There are plenty of eWaste recycling centers around, so recycling your truly broken electronics is one of the best moves you can make for the environment. Here are some other things you can do:

    Don’t buy into the planned obsolescence. If it’s not broken, don’t get a new one! If it’s only a little broken, try to fix it. You’d be amazed at how you can stay on top of the latest technology just by upgrading your computer parts rather than buying a whole new computer, for instance.
    Donate unwanted electronics that still work. There are tons of donation centers around the United States that will get your used electronics into the hands of people who really need them! Take advantage of these opportunities when you can.
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    http://www.occupyforanimals.org/uploads/7/7/3/5/7735203/2612842.jpg

    eWaste - the final destination
    Every year, hundreds of thousands of old computers and mobile phones are dumped in landfills or burned in smelters. Thousands more are exported, often illegally, from the Europe, US, Japan and other industrialised countries, to Asia. There, workers at scrap yards, some of whom are children, are exposed to a cocktail of toxic chemicals and poisons.

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    Sanicle
    Sanicle

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    Post  Sanicle on Sun Mar 11, 2012 10:24 am

    Good post Burgundia. I also worry about the Mercury in the new light globes we 'have to have'. It's just not well publicised over here in Australia just how bad the electronic waste and these light globes are for the environment and I can't find any stations to safely get rid of the globes. I've had one sitting on my bench that I don't want to put in the rubbish for about 3 months while trying to find somewhere. It says on the box to go to their website to find out about disposal and it tells you NOTHING!
    mudra
    mudra

    Posts : 20642
    Join date : 2010-04-09
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    Location : belgium

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    Post  mudra on Sun Mar 11, 2012 12:43 pm

    Sanicle wrote:Good post Burgundia. I also worry about the Mercury in the new light globes we 'have to have'. It's just not well publicised over here in Australia just how bad the electronic waste and these light globes are for the environment and I can't find any stations to safely get rid of the globes. I've had one sitting on my bench that I don't want to put in the rubbish for about 3 months while trying to find somewhere. It says on the box to go to their website to find out about disposal and it tells you NOTHING!

    There are a few adresses and links on this website Sanicle .
    Hope this helps.

    Arrow http://www.environment.gov.au/settlements/waste/lamp-mercury.html

    Love Always
    mudra

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