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What Does the EPA Say About Electronic Waste Disposal

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Daliah Okoro
Daliah Okoro
April 30, 2018

Electronic waste has been a quickly growing problem ever since the world of technology began to increase. Thanks to fast-paced technologies, consumers more promptly get new products and leave their old phones, laptops, printers and other devices behind. The EPA on electronic waste states that due to the increase in e-waste, it’s become essential to consider options other than sending old devices to the landfill. While donating can be a good option, IT asset recycling has also become one of the most popular approaches to growing e-waste.

The United States Environmental Protection Agency, EPA, works alongside with environmental officials and governments from around the world on e-waste management. Due to the trace amounts of hazardous substances found in old, electronic devices and the mass amounts of e-waste that ends up in landfills, there was significant harm being done to the environment. Hazardous substances such as beryllium, cadmium, chromium, lead, mercury, zinc, nickel, and brominated flame retardants are all found in items such as computers, cell phones, stereo equipment, televisions, and various computer equipment. To keep these hazardous substances from getting into the ground, reach water supplies and even to get into the air we breathe, IT recycling has become an excellent solution.

When considering recycling your old, electronic devices, it’s encouraged by the EPA to stick with certified electronic recyclers. Electronic recyclers that have been certified means that they have gone through a rigorous audit and have successfully demonstrated that they have met the standards to recycle and manage electronic waste safely. Currently, the two accredited certification standards for electronic recyclers are the Responsible Recycling Practices (R2) and the e-Stewards standards. If you or your company is looking into electronic recycling for your e-waste, be sure to make sure either of these standards certifies the company you choose.

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