Whatcha Going To Do With All That Junk?

posted in: BRSA Member News | 0

What in the world would we do without technology? Quite frankly, I do believe we could adjust to life without it, but in today’s society, we use technology in almost every aspect of our daily lives. In fact, what are you using to read this article right now?

The realm of electronic waste has dubbed itself the hip name of “E-Waste,” which sums up the never-ending list of cellphones, telephones, fax and copying machines, televisions, computer monitors, computer hard drives, keyboards, mice (not the furry ones), laptops, cameras, gaming systems, and so much more. Although we may not realize it, these devices can contain small or trace amounts of heavy metals, such as lead, silver, barium, cadmium, and mercury, which are regulated under RCRA (Resource Conservation and Recovery Act).  You can click here if you’d like to learn some of the health effects of heavy metals, specifically to humans.

Today’s brand spanking new and best technology ever becomes outdated tomorrow and the cycle will continue, creating a constant need for upgraded technology, whether it be a software upgrade or purchasing new equipment. Guess what that leaves us with?! A big pile of E-Waste that, let’s face it, we’ll never use again. Thankfully, as society and technology continue to advance, we have come to realize the importance of “Reduce, Reuse, Recycle” and its application to E-Waste.

Within the state of Virginia, there are several outlets to which you can direct your E-Waste. Some recycling companies may charge to accept your items or charge a pick-up fee, while some may just take it off of your hands for free. There are even companies that accept your E-Waste and upcycle it to be used in school systems. Would you look at that; helping out the environment and school systems all by handing over some junk. You can even check out stores like Office Depot, Best Buy, Goodwill, and Dell that will accept E-Waste.

Before you decide (if you decide) to recycle your E-Waste, make sure that you clear your hard drive of all sensitive information. Click here to see how. Even if you decide to send your E-Waste to the dump, you should still clear your hard drive.

The process of recycling or re-purposing your E-Waste requires minimal effort and can be developed into a reoccurring program within your company. It’s as simple as clearing all of your sensitive information from the device and scheduling a pick-up or drop-off. Remember, just as it goes when you're saving money and every penny counts, every step you take to being a more eco-friendly facility counts.

Katelyn Haupt

BRSA Project Coordinator