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Why You Are Required to Recycle Your E-Waste

As Australians continue to adopt new technologies at a fast rate, more electronic waste is bound to get generated. This further exacerbates the already complex problem of e-waste disposal and its detrimental impact on the environment. 

Have you ever wondered why you're required to take your old, dead or obsolete computer, stereo, television, mobile phone, printer or other electronic device to a local or community e-waste recycling facility? 

E-waste recycling, if done the right way, is beneficial to you and the environment in the following ways.

It leads to the retrieval of valuable components.

Electronics are made of several reusable materials and parts like metal, plastic, glass, hard drives and printed circuit boards. E-waste recycling presents the perfect opportunity to salvage these components so they don't get discarded together with zero-value waste components. Each of the salvaged components is then taken to waste recycling facilities that accept them for specialised recycling. 

The retrieval of recyclable components by e-waste recyclers is good for the environment in many different ways. To start with, it reduces the need to extract new raw materials required to manufacture new products from scratch. This helps save time and energy. The reduced demand for virgin materials also helps to reduce the rate at which planet Earth's natural resources are getting depleted.

Another environmental benefit of e-waste recycling is that it minimises the disruptive impact on land that may happen during mining activities carried out to extract raw materials like metal ores, petroleum and natural gas. In addition, the carbon footprint associated with manufacturing new products using recycled materials is significantly lower compared to that of manufacturing the products from scratch.

It leads to safe disposal of hazardous substances.

E-waste recyclers do not just retrieve reusable components from electronic waste, they also ensure the safe handling and disposal of toxic substances like lead, mercury and refrigerant, which are a human health and environmental hazard if not properly handled and disposed of. 

If any hazardous substances are found in recyclable components like light bulbs and batteries, they will be taken to specialised recycling facilities to ensure safe removal. Planet Earth and the people that live on it will be kept safe from the hazards posed by toxic substances present in e-waste.

Now that you understand why you're required to take your electronics waste to an e-waste recycler, you should encourage others to follow suit. A concerted effort is required to realise the true extent of the benefits e-waste recycling can bring.