When it comes to determining how prevalent e-waste is, it’s important to look at some landfill data. According to a report conducted by the EPA, computers and other forms of e-waste accounted for 70% of all heavy metals that were found in landfills and today, that number has only increased. One of the best things that consumers can do to help reduce the amount of e-waste in landfills is to recycle printers, desktops and other old electronics that are no longer used.
One of the biggest problems that is affecting the amount of e-waste that ends up in landfills is the rate that consumers are purchasing new electronics. While advancing technology adds greater ease of use and connection between consumers, it also means that people are retiring their cell phones and electronics faster than ever before. In 2010, Americans purchased 71.7 million new laptop and desktop computers. That same year, Americans threw away 423,000 tons of computers which ended up landfills. Thankfully, there are different options you can consider that are not simply having old electronics end up in landfills. Instead, there are options that not only help to reduce the number of electronics in landfills, but also helps to create jobs and keeps pollution in the groundwater and in the air at a minimum.
One option to consider when it comes to old electronic devices is to donate it to a charitable organization, many of which will also offer you a tax deduction for your donations. Many charitable organizations use these old devices to help students or communities that are in need. Retailers such as Office Depot, Staples and Best Buy also offer drop off locations for all old electronics making recycling easy. Finally, third party e-waste recycling companies are the best option if you’re not planning on making a donation. These companies are certified to safely, securely and ethically recycle various types of electronic waste.