Back to Blog • Posted on December 22, 2015 by admin
Technology is all around us. In today’s modern world, you’re likely to be watching a video on your laptop while simultaneously texting on a smartphone. A TV may be sitting unwatched in the background while your sibling listens to music on their iPod and your mother reads a book on her Kindle. What happens to those unwanted electronics when they break or become obsolete?
Most end up in a landfill, which leads to hazardous chemicals being exposed to the environment. E-cycling is one effective way to reduce the amount of discarded electronic equipment from polluting our environment. Kika Enterprises specializes in the recycling of outdated electronics.
E-cycling is the act of refurbishing, redistributing and reusing electronic devices and parts rather than discarding them when they are no longer useful to the owner. With millions of computers and other electronic devices being thrown away every year for newer models, e-cycling aims to chip away at the tons of electronic waste that is accumulating in landfills every year.
Many materials present in electronic hardware can be reclaimed and used in future manufacturing. Materials like silicon, tin, aluminum, iron and various plastics can be reclaimed, which cuts down on the cost of future manufacturing. Electronic components can also contain copper, gold and other precious metals that are in high demand. Since its beginnings in the early 1990s, e-cycling has grown every year as people become more aware of the damage caused to the environment from e-waste. As of 2009, almost 38 percent of computers and 25 percent of e-waste in the United States was recycled. That percentage is growing every year.
Discarded e-waste poses a serious threat to the environment due to the toxic materials present in the devices themselves and in the processes used to manufacture them. Electronic components can include heavy metals such as mercury, lead, or cadmium, which leach into soil and groundwater or pollute the atmosphere when incinerated. Plastics contain polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs), a known carcinogen.
Several organizations promote e-cycling. StRUT (Students Recycling Used Technology), is based in Ohlone College in Fremont, California. The group sponsors a recycling program that serves 20 public schools. To date, they have placed over 500 computers, printers and other refurbished devices at these area schools. They also promote awareness of the problems posed by e-waste through school curriculum. The Resource Area for Teachers (RAFT) and the National Cristina Foundation refurbish donated computers and distribute them to schools and charities worldwide.
Rethink, a project spearheaded by eBay, also promotes e-cycling. Corporate members include Hewlett-Packard, IBM, Intel and Dell. eBay helps consumers come together to buy and sell unwanted, usable cell phones and other electronics that would potentially end up in landfills. Kika Electronic Recycling Services, which has offices in the United States and Ecuador, provides direct recycling for almost all consumer electronics. With an emphasis on computers, cell phones and wireless routers, the company also buys these components worldwide in an effort to keep harmful e-waste out of landfills. Contact Kika today if you have any electronics to recycle!