According to the Canadian government any electronic waste or e-waste that comprises unwanted goods belonging to the family of electronics, needs to be securely disposed of in the right vicinity due to them being harmful to the environment and not bio-degradable.
These can include anything from batteries to cables, smart devices like phones and tablets, laptops, and anything that contains chemicals such as cadmium, mercury, arsenic, lead, or beryllium.
If this is not done correctly, it can affect the environment, including us humans as well. Certain goods cannot be disposed of in the garbage bins and need to be thrown in the right spaces dedicated to them. In Toronto, especially many companies help accomplish this either by disposing of the electronic garbage for you or recycling it into something else useful.
Not many people know what goes into the blue bin and this article on the Toronto services page can help you figure this out.
Harmful Effects of Disposing Electronic Waste in the Garbage
According to the Environment Agency, the waste from electronic goods is the fastest growing and polluting type of waste in the world.
Recycling of items such as computers has become a significant practice throughout many sectors due to the high numbers of waste harming the ecology because these types of garbage harm the earth and go straight into water sources such as seas and lakes, directly harming the ocean life.
There are hundreds of different toxic elements and chemicals present in them such as zinc, lead, nickel, chromium to name a few, that can be harmful when released into the environment and all of this goes straight into the ground thereby harming plant life, as well as humans especially in cases where the water we drink comes directly from the oceans and lakes.
These can also affect human kidneys, and the nervous system when you are exposed to them. You can find out more about it here.
Almost 500,000 tons of electronic waste goes unaccounted for and ends up in landfills. According to studies conducted on this issue, it is predicted that by 2040 this number will increase by at least 15% worldwide.
Options of Getting Rid of E-Waste
There are a few options for getting rid of your electronic waste, however before you choose one, always make sure you protect your private data by wiping any laptops, mobile phones, or smart devices clean before you throw them out.
Many services can help you to get rid of your e-waste safely and securely, and you should always find the ones that have an ethical manner of working. When it comes to electronic waste disposal these services have the right tools to either reuse these gadgets or to dispose of them off in a manner that is not harmful to the environment. In a sustainable way.
Look for those organizations that have a stringent process and abide by the regulations stated on the ITAD website. This is a certification given to responsible companies that can guarantee a safe and ethical practice.
They will securely get rid of any possible data that may still be on the devices and refurbish the gadgets or repair and resell them to those in need, thereby making it cost-effective and a helpful solution to others.
The majority of these refurbished goods are sold at a fraction of the original price and are fixed to almost back to a new state so other companies such as schools or charities can reuse them instead of having to purchase expensive new ones from stores.
So, the next time you decide to throw away that laptop or smartphone, think about how it will affect things negatively. Instead look for a proper service such as a recycling center in your area that you can drop the devices at or look for places that have dedicated boxes placed in specific locations such as outside shopping malls, playgrounds, and parks or charity stores, and drop it in there instead.
Unless you cannot get it refurbished yourself, they will do so and resell it to those in need in other sectors. Always make sure you wipe it clean before you do it by deleting the files and re-formatting it properly so that no vital or personal information remains on it.