The Effects of E-Waste
Anyone who is reading this post will be in possession of an electronic device which will reach the end of its lifespan at some point, and then be thrown away just to be replaced with a new device.
When looking at the surface of it, the cycle doesn’t seem to cause a problem. We purchase electronics, use it till they break or till newer models flood the market and then we discard them. However, when you analyse it a little deeper, this cycle turns out to be more complicated. This article describes the little-known aspects of E-Waste and the impact that it creates on our environment.
The exporting process
Dead electronic components are the swiftest emerging waste stream. Most electronic waste from developed countries like the UK and North America are shipped overseas. This is where things take a turn to the worse.
In China particularly, there are towns that are the go-to location for the dumping of the globe’s E-Waste. The most well-known of them all is Guiyu which is known as the “world’s electronics graveyard”. Residents are known to burn electronics in their houses in order to extract metals such as gold and copper. The downside is that they are also releasing hazardous toxins into the air which poison the residents and cause significant damage to the surrounding environment.
The harmful toxins present
Electronic components contain a number of toxic substances and need specific types of recycling and disposal. The toxic substances include mercury, lead and barium to name a few; all of which can cause negative effects on all systems in our body. Some of the health effects are birth defects, damage to the brain, heart, livers and kidneys and the reproductive system.
When these electronics are burnt instead of being sent off for electronics recycling to a company like Resolve IT Recycling Group, the toxic substances are released into the atmosphere causing a danger to everyone around.
Some have tried to work around this by dumping electronics into landfills or by melting them down. This doesn’t make much of a difference either. When electronics are emptied into a landfill, the toxins can seep through the soil into water sources underwater, causing a much bigger problem. When mixed with water, the toxins can harm aquatic life in any lake or pond they filter into and if humans use it as a drinking source, it will be transferred back to them.
The above negative effects should be enough of an explanation on why you should take the time to properly discard items instead of just throwing it away into the dustbin.
Let us discard your electronics in a safe manner!
Resolve IT Recycling Group is a WEEE recycling centre that focuses on recycling all electronics including IT recycling. We possess approval from relevant authorities and follow ISO accredited procedures to ensure the job is done without any errors. We also offer a range of related services such as Secure Data Destruction and tailor-made services that fit your needs. Call us on 01278 588410 or use our online booking for more information on what we do.