Computer recycling is a way to prevent valuable parts from entering landfills by finding ways to reuse or restore them. Re-purposing computers prevents harmful toxins from entering into the environment. Environmental benefits are not the only benefits derived from re-purposing these machines. Despite these computers being outdated, recycled computer parts are very valuable. There are several things people can do to recycle their no longer wanted computers.
Recycling computers is helps to prevent valuable parts from entering landfills. Recycling or re-using computers involves finding new ways to use the various parts or the computer itself. The majority of recycling involves salvaging any usable parts from the machines. In other cases, the computers are fixed and end up donated or resold. Re-purposing takes a machine that is slated for the landfill and gives them a longer lifespan.
Re-using old computers is important to the environment. Computers are in the category of hazardous household waste. Millions of them end up in landfills and the incinerator. This adds toxic chemicals to the ground water, soil and air. Batteries are one of most common parts found in landfills. They contain cadmium, nickel and other heavy metals. Motherboards are known to contain chromium while cathode ray tubes are laced with lead. These are metals that people often advised to avoid.
There are several benefits to re-purposing computers. One benefit is the increase in their affordability. People are able to spend less on computers due to an increased availability of used computers for purchase. There is also a reduction in the carbon footprint of manufacturers. If there is no reason to produce as many new products, the companies will not make as many. This causes a decreased use of energy in their manufacturing processes.
Re-purposed computer parts have many uses. Most the parts of these machines are recyclable. These parts include cathode ray tubes, keyboards and plastic cases. The glass in computers has the lead removed and is used to create recycled glass. The plastic case used to house computers is turned into mixes to fix potholes.The metal parts are removed and sold for scrap. If the components are in working conditions, they become replacement parts.
There are several ways to recycle old computers. One way is donation. Non-for-profit organizations are a good way to help the environment and those in need. Many of the organizations refurbish the computers for use in schools and disadvantaged communities. Several office supply stores accept batteries and empty printer cartridges for recycling. Some office supply stores offer incentives for recycling. Municipalities offer home pick-up of these machines as a part of their recycling initiative.
The local and national governments of many nations have instituted policies to assist in the re-purposing of electronics.However, most do have laws mandating re-purposing. Japan is one of the few nations that requires manufacturers and sellers to recycle 75% of their computers they sell.
Preventing old computers from ending up in landfills serves several purposes. These machines are ideal for re-using and rehabilitating. Saving computers from landfills prevents the toxic chemicals they produce from entering the environment. Many of the parts are salvageable and usable in other applications. The benefits of re-purposing extends to environmental ones and beyond.
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