Where does all the E-Waste go?

10.22.2011 · Posted in Uncategorized

Look at all that E-Waste!

So you just got a brand new flat screen tv or you bought a brand new laptop because your old one was running to slow. Now your old electronics are just taking up space and they have no use to you anymore so you bring them to your local electronics recycling drive. You know that state laws and regulations require you to get rid of your E-Waste in a safe manner by bringing it to an appropriate drop-off site or by disposing of it properly, but have you ever wondered where your old electronics with all of those nasty and toxic chemicals go once you drop them off and drive away? Many people don’t know the truth about E-Waste dumping and it can be quite disturbing. Did you know that the U.S. exports about 80 percent of its E-Waste to China, where poor Chinese citizens pick apart circuit boards and other parts of computers and tvs with their hands as toxic chemicals burin their hands and toxic fumes fill their lungs? Did you also know that several toxic chemicals that can cause nervous damage, cancer, and kidney damage such as mercury, cadmium, and several other toxins? 

The illegal exportation of E-Waste to other countries has become a serious problem in the United States and it is risking the lives of several innocent people overseas who risk their lives to obtain these chemicals because they are forced to make a choice between poison and poverty. So now that you know where all that E-Waste goes what can you do to help? Well, before you recycle your electronic waste, do some homework and look into the sites where you are recycling. Try to find a facility that specifically states that they recycle their E-Waste in the United States and they DO NOT ship their E-Waste overseas. Another thing you can do to help is to hold onto to that “outdated” cell phone, Ipod, laptop, or tv until it really doesn’t work anymore or until it absolutely must be replaced. By cutting down on your consumption of these electronic products and by doing your best to make sure the site you recycle at practices safe and legal recycling of E-Waste we can put an end to the exportation of our E-Waste to other countries where others must recycle them in an unsafe manner.

Here is some more information about the growing problem with E-Waste and how you can help!

http://www.cbsnews.com/8301-504803_162-20068980-10391709.html?tag=mncol;lst;5

-A 6o Minutes segment on following e-waste to China

http://www.greenpeace.org/usa/en/campaigns/toxics/hi-tech-highly-toxic/e-waste-solutions/

-GreenPeace proposed solutions of how to put an end to toxic e-waste

http://www.greenpeace.org/usa/en/campaigns/toxics/hi-tech-highly-toxic/company-report-card/

which companies are the best, and the worst, in terms of e-waste and how environmentally friendly their products are!

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