According to Statistics Canada, the amount of electronic wastes in Canada has almost tripled within the last four years. However, it’s not all grim as electronic waste diversion efforts have increased over the same period. This is a form of electronic recycling where hazardous materials are redirected to so that they don’t end up in landfills.
Disposing of any electronic equipment in the trash is illegal in Canada. Electronics contain numerous harmful or toxic substances that can pose serious health and environmental risks when discarded inappropriately. Some of the toxic metallic components found in electronic gadgets include barium, cadmium, arsenic, beryllium, phosphorus, mercury, lead, silver, lithium, among others. The information on the Ontario Electronics Stewardship website may have additional insights and can provide you with further support.
Electronic Devices that shouldn’t be dumped in Landfills
Almost all electronic devices are prohibited from Canadian landfills. These include computer accessories, fax machines, printers, radios, video game consoles, computer monitors, and much more.
Various professional electronic recycling companies in Canada offer services like e-cycle coupons and special collection programs to assist you to get rid of your electronic wastes. Some local retailers and manufacturers also offer free or cheap recycling options.
What’s the Value of E-waste?
E-waste contains several valuable recoverable items like plastics, silver, copper, gold, ferrous metals, and aluminum. To conserve energy and natural resources required to manufacture new electronic devices from virgin materials, electronic gadgets can be reused, refurbished, or recycled as opposed to filling up landfills.
Advantages of Recycling E-waste
The following are some of the benefits of recycling e-wastes:
• Conservation of natural resources- recycling allows you to recover valuable items from your outdated electronics which can be used to make new items. As a result, you conserve energy, reduce greenhouse gases, and save resources.
• Protects your environment- safely recycling old electronic items promotes proper management of harmful chemicals like mercury and lead.
• Philanthropy- an old radio cassette you no longer use could be of great help to someone in need.
• Job creation- E-cycling as created many employment opportunities that include refurbishers, professional recyclers, in addition to creating new market opportunities for valuable components that are recovered.
• Saves landfill space- There’s an ever increasing amount of E-wastes. By recycling these materials, a lot of landfill space is conserved.
The Canadian health and environmental standards have made recycling of e-wastes very costly. In most developing countries, the regulations are either non-existent or unenforced. That allows recyclers to quickly extract what is valuable while dumping everything else in landfills. For instance, an informal recycler can simply smash a computer monitor and extract valuable copper windings and dump the rest of the carcass in a local river. However, to protect the environment from harmful pollution, it is worth finding a professional electronic recycling firm in Canada to help with the diversion.