E-waste is something we all produce and it's a problem. No, it's not spam or the mountain of unsolicited emails and internet trash both from others and yourself -- put simply, it's electronic waste. And more specifically, electronic device waste like computers, phones, stereos, TVs and the like. With the onslaught of device upgrades and new version releases, the cycle of waste generation has increased dramatically. To help combat the e-waste trend, the team at Bentall Kennedy Residential Services has put together a list of ideas for lowering your impact.
Solving the e-waste problem starts with education. Most people are trained to recycle paper, bottles, and cans. You may not realize that almost anything electronic can be recycled properly with a bit of effort. Many cities now have depots or specified days and locations for recycling or safely disposing of e-waste. Check online and see what your city offers.
Waste starts with consumption. If you don't buy it, it won't end up in a landfill. While need and want can sometimes be difficult to separate, consider whether you really need that new phone, tablet, or TV.
Upgrade Instead of Buy New
With the quality of devices (generally) increasing, lifespan should follow suit. While in practice this isn't always the case, computers especially can have extended lifespans through upgrading. With a new drive, more RAM, or an updated processor, your laptop can get a whole new lease on life.
Laptops, phones, ipads, TVs, even appliances -- there's a ton of stuff out there for sale that's been lightly used or not at all.
Extend the life of your electronics.
If you buy a case, keep it clean, keep it dry, and generally take care of your device and it'll last. Modern people make perfectly good use of (cough) iPhone fours and even flip phones. While potentially debasing socially, a working phone is a working phone.
Buy Environmentally Friendly Electronics
Electronic products are being made with ever increasing efficiency and/or non-toxic components. Look for light bulbs, TVs, and all manner of appliances with Energy Star or Electronic Product Environmental Assessment Tool (EPEAT) certification.
Donate used electronics
Social programs, shelters, non-profits, and storm relief organizations can all make use of working used electronics. Many used electronics shops and smaller phone supply stores will also take and refurbish old devices.
As part of our Forever Green initiative, the Bentall Kennedy Residential Services blog team hopes this list helps you reduce e-waste and contribute to a green future. For more information about Bentall Kennedy properties in your city, please visit our website.