The Benefits Of E-waste Recycling and Sycamore

Rapid technological advances and accessibility to the consumer and industrial markets have brought about a global connection once thought impossible. However, with the growing changes in various media, the way that media is consumed, and newer more efficient technical solutions, a growing surplus of electronic waste is at an all time high.

On average, the planet disposes of 50 million tons of “e-waste” each year, with the vast majority of this waste sitting in landfills or being incinerated. The Environmental Protection Agency estimates that only 15-20% of this e-waste becomes recycled.

Most electronic devices contain a wide variety of metals that can be recovered and reused. Substances such as fiberglass, tin, copper, and aluminum and even trace elements including silver and gold can all be found in unwanted devices. Other more dangerous materials such as nickel, lead, and mercury can pose huge health risks to humans and the environment if improperly disposed.

Through careful dismantling and extracting of these materials, precious natural resources are saved and the typical hazards of air and water pollution that come with improper disposal are avoided completely. In addition, greenhouse gas emissions produced by the manufacturing of new products become reduced. While an LCD monitor screen is significantly more energy efficient than a CRT, the amount of gases with high global warming potential produced in the manufacturing of LCD monitors often means that their lifetime greenhouse gas emissions are higher if created at a more frequent rate. Up to 500 lbs of carbon dioxide can be generated from the creation of a single brand new laptop. A figure that makes using a newer more “efficient” electronic device seem moot.

At Sycamore International, we properly recycle 50,000 – 90,000 lbs of e-waste a month. Everything from personal computers, Macs, Laptops, LCD and CRT monitors, server equipment, and everything in between. Anything that is not working or cannot be salvaged is recycled in a safe and responsible manner while an average of 4,000 – 9,000 functioning computers a month have their virtual lives extended by years. Sycamore International then sells their electronics that have been refurbished to various organizations and educational services so they can have their full potential mobilized.

Sycamore International realizes the numerous benefits that coincide with proper e-waste management and will stride great lengths to purchase your unwanted hardware for recycling and to give back to the community.

(Written by Scott Freehoff, 2015)