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Why should we recycle electronics?
Nearly everyone owns electronics. When upgrading to a new cell phone or computer you’ve probably wondered what to do with your old one. Every year, nearly 50 million metric tons of electronics are destined for disposal.* But these products can contain lead, cadmium, mercury, and other hazardous wastes and 80% of this material ends up in landfills. This improper disposal of electronics, as well as illegal dumping, illegal exporting, and unsafe rural smelting overseas, severely impacts both the environment and human health. The hazardous material they contain can pollute the air, contaminate soil, and leach into water supplies. Health risks range from kidney disease to brain damage to genetic mutations. Discarding electronics can also present a variety of privacy, security, and intellectual property concerns. But this doesn’t have to happen. Nearly every electronic and its parts – including glass, metals, and plastics – can be recycled and reused.