As useful as electronic devices can be throughout their lifespan, they can also serve a great purpose after they stop functioning. For this reason, they are often disposed of in a process commonly known as E-waste recycling. Examples of electronic equipment that can be recycled are laptops, mobile phones, monitors, hard drives, batteries, and DVD players.
This action of reusing and reprocessing electronics initially began as a way to safeguard human and environmental health and reduce the advent of pollution. According to one study by the UK and Ireland-based Institute of Physics, high quantities of lead in e-waste could potentially cause serious damage to human blood and kidneys, as well as the central nervous system, if it spreads in the environment.
Steps For Proper E-Waste Recycling
According to a 2017 report from United Nations University, Americans throw away approximately $55 billion in e-waste material each year, a sum that exceeds the 2019 Gross Domestic Product of several countries. However, not every person may necessarily be recycling electronics correctly. It’s important to know the proper way to recycle electronics, so here is a detailed, step-by-step guide.
Once e-waste items are transported to a recycling facility, the first action to take is to manually sort all of the electronics and to remove their batteries in order to inspect their quality.
Disassembly Of Electronics
The second step of e-waste recycling consists of disassembling the items (beyond simply taking out the batteries). You must take these electronics apart and subsequently place each type of component or material into a separate category.
Size Reduction Process
This step involves a more specific categorization of the components of electronics. The smaller e-waste particles can even be spread out via a procedure that occurs on a conveyor belt. During this step, dust is also eliminated in such a way that does not hurt the environment. It’s especially important to separate metallic components from their non-metallic counterparts.
This phase involves the use of a special tool known as an over-band magnet, which is designed to remove all magnetic materials, including iron and steel.
In this final step, water is utilized in order to separate glass from plastic content. After this process is complete, any materials recovered can subsequently be reused as raw materials after being resold. Steel, iron, copper, glass, and plastic are all among the materials that can be sold for alternative uses.
It should also be noted that certain electronic items, such as batteries, are typically transported to specialized recycling plants where their outer layers are peeled off to remove any plastic. Stainless steel is often made partly out of recycled batteries. In a report on waste management, the United Nations estimated that 20 to 50 million metric tons of e-waste are disposed of globally each year. Nevertheless, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) estimated that just 12.5% of e-waste is currently recycled.
There remains a significant amount for us to do with regard to the effective management of electronic waste. Certain states, such as New York, have taken concrete measures to enforce proper e-waste methods in order to protect the environment. In 2010, New York’s state legislature signed into law the Electronic Equipment Recycling and Reuse Act, which requires manufacturers to offer free and convenient recycling of electronic waste to a majority of New York consumers. New York State also passed a separate law that addresses the recycling of mobile phones.
Contact The E-Waste Recycling Professionals
Speak to the professionals at e-End in Frederick, Maryland for more information about the benefits of e-waste recycling. We are one of the top electronic recycling organizations in the Maryland, Virginia, & Pennsylvania regions, partly because we have achieved NAID’s AAA requirements in specialized destruction services.
The team at e-End is equipped to cover a wide range of recycling and destruction services, including Secure Data Destruction, Electronics Recycling, Equipment & Device Device Destruction, and IT Asset Disposition. Regardless of the items and materials that you are seeking to dispose of, e-End will assist you thoroughly. We conduct audits and on-site visits in order to ensure that all materials are properly handled and that all parties involved in the recycling and destruction process communicate effectively and appropriately. We are also validated by the highest electronic certifications in order to verify that you remain compliant with GLB, SOX, FACTA, COP, FISMA, and HIPAA. Call e-End today at 240-529-1010 or contact us online to learn more about our extensive electronic recycling and destruction services.