How to Wipe a Computer Before Recycling

If it’s time to give up on an old computer, it’s important to know how to wipe it before either recycling or donating it. The amount of data stored on a personal or work computer is a treasure trove for data thieves, and wiping that data properly will protect you and your sensitive information.  This is true whether you’re recycling, donating, or selling that old computer. While recycling will typically involve shredding of the hard drive, rendering the data unreadable, it’s still smart to wipe it beforehand. Thankfully, for most modern computers, the process is fairly straightforward.  How to Wipe a Windows Computer  If you’re operating a Windows computer from Windows 8 and onwards, you can wipe the hard drive […]

How to Reduce E-Waste: Easy Steps to Follow

Each year, the world produces mountains of e-waste, weighing in at over 60 million tons a year. As we continue to incorporate technology into every facet of our lives, that number continues to grow. As a result, figuring out how we reduce that e-waste becomes more and more important as the years go on.  Increasing the urgency to reduce our e-waste output is the toxicity of the equipment as they decompose. Most electronics contain toxic chemicals and elements like cadmium, mercury, and other rare earth elements that can poison the soil, water, and air around their disposal site.  Recycling e-waste helps prevent this, but reducing e-waste where you can also benefits the environment and, often, your wallet.  How to Reduce […]

IT Recycling for Security and E-Waste Reduction

A company’s IT department is responsible for maintaining technology through its whole lifecycle. This commonly includes troubleshooting onboarding, technology setup, or, too often, asking if a coworker had restarted their computer to see if it solved the problem. However, the end of a piece of technology’s life cycle can not be solved with a simple restart. That requires recycling, and IT is often tasked with ensuring the safe disposal of the technology and its data.  The Importance of IT Recycling  While individuals should recycle their computers, phones, and other electronics to help reduce e-waste, the scale of the job for IT departments makes an effective recycling process even more crucial. When upgrading or replacing old systems, this often means hundreds […]

How to Recycle a Laptop Battery

Laptop batteries have improved in leaps and bounds in the past couple decades. They last longer, charge faster, and hold on to their charge a lot longer. However, they’re not perfect, and eventually, every laptop battery will wear out, and you will need to recycle it.  Where to Recycle a Laptop Battery No matter where you are, you should not put an old laptop battery in your regular recycling bin. Most city and county recyclers won’t have the technology to recycle an old laptop battery. In addition, leaving it exposed in a recycling bin could lead it to catching fire, and due to the flammable nature of lithium-ion batteries, it is incredibly dangerous. However, there is good news. Many electronic […]

E-Waste Disposal Guidelines for Individuals

When it comes time to part with an old piece of technology, the goodbye can become a bit complicated. Computers, cell phones, TVs, and other electronics can’t simply be tossed into the trash can. Figuring out how exactly to dispose of an old electronic may seem like a complicated puzzle. A cheat sheet of e-waste disposal guidelines helps you solve it quickly and easily.  E-Waste Guidelines for Computer and Cell Phones To start, guidelines for proper e-waste disposal can depend on what state you reside in. For example, California law requires proper disposal for many kinds of e-waste, but also provides their residents with drop-off locations around the state. Most states don’t have disposal requirements as stringent as California, but […]

The Current State of E-Waste Recycling Technology

The amount of E-waste the world produces a year is a staggering 50 million tons a year, and only growing. While that’s only a fraction of the overall waste the world generates, it makes up the lionshare of toxic waste. As such, it’s more important than ever to produce effective and efficient e-waste recycling technology.  Much of the technology we use now involves older techniques, converted to e-waste recycling. Smelting down metal, using acidic solutions to break down components, shredding and magnetizing. However, as the e-waste problem grows, so too are the solutions to it, and novel ideas are being pioneered to recover as much as possible from our discarded technology. Types of E-Waste Recycling Technology in Use  Pyrometallurgical Recycling  […]

Battery Recycling Protocols

Batteries help power the modern world. They’re everywhere, from cell phones, to laptops, to cars, and the list goes on and on. This technology, which is as old, or older, than the United States, keeps our technological revolution going. But batteries have lifespans, and if we want to protect our environment and use our resources sustainably, we’ll have to make sure battery recycling goes as mainstream as the cell phones they power.  Batteries, like the devices and technologies they power, are made from many different materials. Some contain lithium, some cobalt, some mercury – the list encompasses much of the periodic table. Unfortunately, many of these resources are limited, and some of them are toxic to the environment after they’re […]

The Ethical Issues Surrounding E-Waste Disposal

The world produces roughly 50 million tons of e-waste a year, and the number continues to grow. This waste generally falls into the toxic category, making its disposal more difficult than just tossing it into a landfill. However, a landfill somewhere is still where it often ends up. This creates significant ethical issues surrounding the disposal of e-waste.  How E-Waste Disposal Creates Ethical Issues  While shipping e-waste to poorer countries technically goes against the Basel Convention, which was signed by a number of countries, including the United States, the practice remains common. Countries will ship old or malfunctioning technology to poorer countries, often in West Africa or Southeast Asia.  Once the technology arrives there, it follows a few different paths, […]

Secure-E Waste Destruction: Why It’s Important

E-waste takes many forms. From the most commonly thought about, cell phones and computers, to the more niche, like smart printers. All of the e-waste we generated played a part in our increasingly digital lives, whether it be connecting us to our friends, or printing out a crucial business presentation. Just as it was important to us during its useful life, it’s important to be mindful during its disposal. Secure e-waste destruction is important, both for the health of the environment, and for the security of your personal data.  Why Secure E-Waste Destruction is Important If your technology contains any sort of memory device, you need to make sure it’s destroyed properly. While this may sound like hyperbole, the dangers […]

The Significant Environmental Impact of E-Waste

Whether it be at home, the office, or out and about, electronics are everywhere. They’re vital for communication, work, and keeping life going. There’s little doubt that a modern world without electronics wouldn’t be modern at all. However, that’s come at a cost. Nearly all of the old technology we’ve discarded as e-waste is having a significant environmental impact, and we need to address it.  As technology expanded into every aspect of life, so too did the volume of the e-waste generated. In 2021, it was estimated that e-waste alone weighed 57 million tons worldwide. The environmental impact of this tremendous volume of e-waste is still being evaluated, but the early signs are worrying.  E-Waste’s Environmental Impact on Water and […]