Electronic devices became an inseparable part of our lifestyle and vital part of our economy. Rapidly changing technologies create constant consumer demand for the latest device that results in growing number of electronics entering our market, while unwanted devices are being discarded, creating continuously growing quantity of electronic waste.
Inletkeeper’s goal is to make electronics recycling available to all residents of Cook Inlet Watershed and we are determined to stop e-waste from polluting our communities and leaching toxins to our watershed. The 14th Annual Electronics Recycling Event in Homer will take place on May 5th 2019 and Seward on May 11th. To learn more about our events go to E-cycling events.
WHAT IS ELECTRONIC WASTE?
Electronic waste, also commonly called e-waste, is a term for electronic products that have become unwanted, non-working or obsolete, and have essentially reached the end of their useful life.
HOW CAN WE SUSTAINABLY MANAGE OUR E-WASTE?
- Buy green: if you decide to purchase new piece of equipment, consider it’s environmental impact and try to do some research ahead of time. Many manufacturers incorporate long lasting value, performance, simplicity and energy efficiency in their products with the end of life solutions, like retailer and manufacturer take back programs.There is also number of companies specializing in green electronics research and sustainable product recommendations can be found right on their websites (e.g. Green Electronics ).
- Repair and reuse: if it can be fixed, why to throw it away? In many cases repairing older piece of equipment is much less expensive than purchasing new one. And we can help you find a local repair shop in your area.
- Donate: if your unwanted device is still working why not let someone else enjoy it? Donating your old electronics plays an important role in the provision of refurbished products such as computers and mobile phones, which can be of great help to low-income families, schools, and not-for-profit organizations. It also helps individuals gain access to technology that they could not have otherwise afforded. Let us help you find a donation center near you.
- Recycle: there is many year round e-cycling opportunities in south-central Alaska as well as couple annual electronics recycling events.
WHY IS ELECTRONICS RECYCLING SO IMPORTANT?
- Helps Protect Public Health and the Environment: old electronics contain toxic substances such as lead, mercury, cadmium, chromium and other heavy metals hazardous to the environment and humans. If not processed properly (e.g. illegally dumped at local landfill), those chemicals can seep into water supplies polluting them and endangering local community, livestock and wildlife that lives nearby.
- Conserves Natural Resources: electronic waste contains streams of steel, plastic, copper, aluminum and precious metals like gold or silver, that provide much richer (40 to 50 times more abundant) source of those materials than an extraction of virgin materials (via mining and purifying).
- Creates Employment Locally: specifically Green Job creation is one of the wonderful bi-products of E-cycling! New firms dealing with electronics recycling will form and existing firms will look to employ more people to recover recyclable materials as the demand for raw materials (and e-cycling) grows.
*AND IT’S THE RIGHT THING TO DO!*