Friday 18 September 2020
Got an old mobile phone or electrical device you don't use? What about repairing or donating them before you consider recycling? Photo: Unsplash

It can be too tempting to purchase the latest iPhone and to upgrade your tablet since you keep dropping your old one but it might be time to hit the pause button on your electronic device purchases. The most recent report by the Global E-waste Monitor, which was drafted in partnership with the United Nations University, showed that Asia generated the greatest volume of e-waste (discarded electronics and electrical items) in 2019 — about 24.9 Megatonnes per year and worldwide, only 17.4% of 2019’s e-waste was collected and recycled. If that doesn’t seem like a huge number, consider this: the e-waste generated in 2019 alone weighed substantially more than all the adults in Europe.

With all the accidents that befall smartphones and tablets, and the never-ending need for up-to-date computers and household appliances, our societies buy and throw away high-tech items at an astonishing rate. Once discarded, this e-waste, as it is called, becomes a major environmental hazard. Here are some tips on how to correctly recycle unwanted electronics.


According to Global E-Waste Monitor, only 17.4% of 2019’s e-waste was collected and recycled. Photo: iStock


Consider your purchase

Before they become waste, electrical items and electronics have to be selected and purchased. And ahead of these transactions you should seriously be wondering about your need for them. If you really cannot do without a new computer or a new phone for example, you can always opt to purchase a refurbished one. At the same time, if the device you are replacing is still functional, you should either consider selling it or giving it away to a needy friend, or a charity that will sell it in your stead.


Try repairing devices

Repairing household machines can considerably delay their planned obsolescence. Just do a quick Google search to find plenty of repair services that will put broken devices back on their feet for another few years. Alternatively, you might like to consider doing the work yourself. Even if you are not particularly technically minded, there is plenty of help at hand from video tutorials on the internet, where people come together to share information and expertise. Finally, as a last resort, charities and recycling businesses will often repair items before they consider recycling them for scrap.



Source: AFP Relax News