E-waste Disposal Techniques
E-waste Disposal Techniques: Knowing the ways to dispose of e-waste is important for businesses and individuals to understand. There are many e-waste disposal techniques, and having a good understanding of the rules and the impacts of not doing it correctly, will help you become more environmentally aware and help fight the growing problem of e-waste.
eWaste disposal methods are more straightforward than you might think, so let’s look through some of the most effective ones together.
The Need for Effective E-waste Disposal Methods
Digital technology has helped industries become global, more connected, efficient, and productive than at any other point in human history, and this pattern is only going to continue into the future.
A downside of our increasing reliance on digital technology is a sharp increase in the amount of e-waste being generated. Nine million tons of electronic equipment is piled into landfills each year in the US alone. When you expand parameters globally, that figure leaps to a staggering 50 million tons.
Because most electronic waste consists of plastic, silicone, and metal, it accounts for 70% of toxic waste generated, despite only accounting for around 2% of the total trash humans generate.
E-waste includes any type of electronic product. While our reliance on computers and digital technology accounts for a lot of the increase in its volume, it also consists of items such as lamps, fittings, cable, and many more pieces of equipment.
It is easy to see why e-waste disposal techniques are so important, so let’s start running through some of the most common ways to dispose of e-waste available.
Common E-waste Disposal Methods
There are a few different ways to dispose of e-waste that have historically been employed; each come with their own set of environmental issues.
This refers to the practice of essentially digging a massive hole in the ground, filling it with waste and then covering it back up with soil. While the pits are lined with clay or plastic with a leachate basin to prevent toxic waste from leeching into the surrounding environment, some substances such as cadmium, lead, and mercury inevitably finds their way into the soil and groundwater, causing contamination.
Soaking electronic circuits in powerful sulphuric, hydrochloric, or nitric acid solutions separates metals from the electronic pathways. The metals can then be recycled and used in the manufacture of new products. However, the highly hazardous acid waste needs to be very carefully disposed of to prevent it from finding its way into local water sources – essentially trading one waste disposal problem for another.
A very crude e-waste disposal method that involves burning the waste in an extremely high temperature incinerator. This has the twin benefit of significantly reducing the waste volume and generating energy that can be repurposed for other applications. Unfortunately, the process of burning the components which make up electronic waste also produces vast quantities of toxic gasses – including cadmium and mercury – which are released into the atmosphere.
Many items of e-waste can be dismantled and their component parts repurposed into new products. E-waste recycling techniques can recover precious metals from circuit boards and be melted down to make new devices or used for other products such as jewellery.
By far, the most environmentally friendly e-waste disposal technique is for, where possible, devices to be reused. Many charities will gladly accept old electronic devices that can then be refurbished and redistributed to people in more disadvantaged communities.
E-waste Disposal Techniques – Effective Ways
For companies that have relatively little electronic waste, the most practical effective e-waste disposal method may be to drop it off at your local designated facility.
These facilities are fully equipped and licensed to receive and dispose of electronic equipment safely and responsibly. However, not all facilities accept all types of equipment, so be sure to check before making the trip. Some facilities are also only licensed for household waste and not commercial, so you need to check they will accept e-waste from your business as well.
As far as ways to dispose of e-waste go, this is one of the simplest options, but you may want to read on if you need to dispose of larger volumes as many drop off facilities will only accept a limited quantity per visit.
Selling or donating your old electronic equipment is also a great e-waste disposal method. As already discussed, charities can refurbish old devices and make sure they are delivered to where the need is greatest. Alternatively, you could generate some extra revenue for your business by selling the equipment. There’s a good market for second-hand computers and other electronic devices that are in reasonable condition, so check out eBay or other selling sites to see how much they are going for.
Alternatively, if your business generates lots of e-waste on a regular basis, you may want to contact a specialist company to make regular collections. These specialist companies will not only be able to remove the e-waste on your behalf but will often be able to take items that a drop-off centre would refuse to accept.
Why Choose TechReset as your Effective Recycling Partner?
When it comes to choosing a company to dispose of your e-waste you need to make sure you choose the right one. You want an experienced, knowledgeable, and specialized company and will work with your business to find the right solutions for your needs.
TechReset offers a range of e-waste disposal techniques and services, including:
- IT asset disposition
- Secure data destruction
- eWaste recycling
- Technology value recovery
- Technology repurposing
- And many more…
With data security being such a hot topic, TechReset guarantees the secure destruction and erasure of all sensitive data that may be stored on your devices using secure facilities and defined processes. This provides you with peace of mind that your sensitive data will never fall into the wrong hands.
In terms of the e-waste disposal methods for reusing and recycling electronic technology, since 2009, TechReset has been working with a higher education institution to create and implement an end-of-life technology program to deal with the laptops provided to students and upgraded every two years. Prior to TechReset’s involvement, there was no process to return the laptops to the manufacturer to be recycled or repurposed.
Through the scheme, the higher education institution in question has received more than $5 million from the returned laptops. TechReset has established a bursary that awards one student per year $800 towards their study expenses.
As you can see, there are many ways to dispose of e-waste, and each comes with its own challenges. However, with the correct e-waste disposal partner, the stress and challenge of e-waste disposal can be reduced. Get in touch with TechReset and find the best e-waste disposal techniques for your business today.