What to DO about business e-Waste
Tuesday, April 14th, 2015
For the majority of the country spring has sprung in April, and the last remnants of dirty snow and ice have finally disappeared from our parks and lawns. April is also host to Earth Day (April 22), a day we think of improving our community and how to be better stewards of our planet.
Cartridge World, and our stores nationwide, are continually looking for ways to reduce our carbon footprint. So, with “spring clean up” on many consumer and company agendas now is the time to make sure your business is recycling, or disposing of electronic waste properly.
Electronic waste, or “e-waste” describes any electronic device that has outlived its usefulness, is broken, energy inefficient, donated, or ready to be discarded. Typical items include: cell phones, computers, monitors, TVs, radios, copiers, and other small electrical appliances.
Surprisingly, many of the devices we are in close contact with contain materials that are extremely hazardous when the device starts to break down. Hazardous chemicals contained in these devices include: cadmium, lead, and mercury. Eventually, these chemicals leach into the soil as part of the decaying process, or get into the atmosphere when incinerated creating environmental issues in our communities.
As a retailer of printers, ink and toner cartridges, Cartridge World supports safe and responsible e-waste recycling. In fact, Cartridge World stores around the world recycle millions of cartridges every year and participate in community recycling projects.
The proper recycling of e-waste can lessen the amount of waste and chemicals placed into the environment. In many parts of the country there are service providers such as e-Stewards (your zip will direct you to closest facility), who certify facilities for proper and responsible e-waste recycling.
In recognition of Earth Day, Cartridge World encourages business to take, or arrange for e-waste items to go to your closest certified e-waste recycling facility.
Before donating or recycling your electronics a reminder to do the following:
consider upgrading hardware or software on computers or laptops, instead of replacing
check to see if a local community organization can use the electronic device
delete all company information, especially financial and medical records
- remove batteries from electronics, as they may require a separate recycling process
To lessen e-waste in new replacement items like computers and printers do your research.
No matter how energy efficient a new machine is, 80 percent of its lifetime energy consumption occurs during its production.
For computers, a desktop beats a laptop. Laptops are limited in their upgrade options, and because of their portability they are damaged easier requiring more frequent replacement. When buying a desktop monitor select an LED-backlit screen as they are mercury-free, a problem with standard LCDs.
On all electronics, look for Energy Star-rated labels. The EPA recently strengthened the Energy Star requirements for computers, making them on average 30 percent more efficient than comparable machines produced in recent years.
Through donation and proper disposal every business large and small can help their communities lessen the impact of e-waste.