Recycling electronics is an easy way to help protect the environment, but many consumers overlook it. It may seem like throwing away an old electronic isn't a big deal and won't cause any serious harm to the environment. However, the reality is that old electronics can not only cause damage but contain precious resources that can be used again and again in the creation of new products, including some electronics. Here are the three big advantages to recycling your electronics.
Many electronics contain heavy metals, like mercury. These toxic substances can have lasting impacts on the environment. They can even so far as to seep into the groundwater, potentially contaminating the water you rely upon to drink. Some heavy metals can also break down and evaporate into the air. If enough of these substances do this, they can ultimately cause acid rain and make the air difficult to breathe.
Recycling electronics allows skilled workers to separate out the heavy metals and either dispose of them safely or to reuse them in new products.
Most electronics actually use small fragments of diamonds in order to conduct electricity and light. While there isn't usually enough of a stone fragment to make a profit off of, recycling this material allows manufacturers to use recycled stones instead of newly mined ones for future electronics. This helps to prevent the price of diamonds from rising excessively, and it reduces the need for dangerous diamond mining that puts the life of miners on the line overseas.
Lastly, due to their nature, the vast majority of materials in electronics are recyclable and reusable. Most of the materials that go into electronics - besides stones and heavy metals - are metal in order to conduct electricity effectively. Metal is one of the most versatile materials when it comes to recycling, and it can be reused in a wide variety of products, from consumer to industrial-level items. Rather than allowing that metal to sit and waste away in a landfill, you can take pride in knowing that it's going on to be useful in another capacity.
Recycling your electronics prevents serious damage from being done to the environment, as well as putting an end to the waste of throwing valuable materials into a dump. If you have old electronics you're not using, seek out an electronics recycling program to give them a new start rather than letting them go to waste.