Electronic Waste

Where do those old iphones go?

So what is it?

Electronic waste is the name for all electronic products that are no longer being used. Many of these products can be recycled, but instead many people just throw them away.

Amount of E-Waste

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  • It is estimated that the amount of e-waste is growing by about 40 million tons a year.
  • As populations grow so does the amount of e-waste. With more people using electronics, there are more people to throw their older electronics away.

What Gets Recycled

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Where Does It All Go?

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  • Approximately 70% of all e-waste ends up in China.
  • Other locations that e-waste ends up in are: India, the Philippines, Nigeria, Pakistan, and Ghana.

Environmental Problems

  • Many toxic materials such as: mercury, lead, beryllium, brominated flame retardants and cadmium can leak into the groundwater causing it to become contaminated. Those toxic materials have been known to cause many health problems such as: kidney damage, brain damage, cancer and cause negative hormonal functions.

Solutions to the Problem

  • People could donate their old electronics. Many places such as schools, non-profit organizations, even friends and family may be able to use electronics that you no longer want or need.
  • Another solution is to recycle electronics in proper recycling facilities.
  • Supporting companies that work towards the prevention and awareness of e-waste.
60 minutes - E-Waste