Recycling is changing, just like many other things in a constantly-changing society. Starting back in the 1970s, environmentally-conscious citizens became aware that the “throwaway society” that had been the American norm in previous decades had come to an end. We saw the increasing pollution in our streams and landfills and realized that there was no such thing as “away” as in “throw away.” It was possible to find real value in what we thought was trash. We learned to recycle.
WHAT IS THE IMPORTANCE OF THIS PROBLEM?
The United Nations University (UNU), released a 2020 report that showed 53.6 million tonnes of electronic waste were generated globally in 2019. This is 21% more than the five-year average. The UNU predicts that the number of electronic waste will rise to 74 million tonnes by 2030. According to the report, e-waste is the fastest-growing domestic waste stream in the world. This is due to the increased use of electronic equipment and the shorter product life spans. There are also fewer repair opportunities. E-waste is a growing concern due to the rapid growth of landfills.
THE ZERO WASTE MOVEMENT
Zero waste is both a philosophy and a method for safely and responsibly managing 21st century electronic waste. Florida communities have taken the zero waste goal to heart and are now working together to assist residents and businesses in recycling all their end-of-life items. eCycle Florida is an example of a local agency that acts as a joint authority in Florida County. It assists residents and businesses to reduce, reuse, and recycle their unwanted materials in a responsible and safe manner. Their goal is zero waste.
WHAT TO DO WITH IT
Some items, such as irrigation hoses should not be placed in the wrong bins. This can lead to damage to the recycling machines which can prove costly to repair or maintain. E-waste can end up in landfills if it is not properly contained.
The Recycle More program in Florida offers curbside pick-up of e waste and other items by appointment. You can also find detailed information on e-waste and the products that are recyclable as well as photos of what they look like. Also, you can see what special handling is required and what precautions to be aware of. The organization provides curbside pick-up of e waste for free, but it is important to clarify that this curbside is and not the regular blue bin. E-waste should not be placed in regular blue bins. Florida residents and businesses can call Florida Recycling to arrange for a pick-up of their e waste.
This post was written by Steven Elia Co-Founder and Recycling Director at eCycle Florida. eCycle Florida is a R2 Certified electronics recycling company in the state of Florida. Our processes and procedures are dedicated to the proper destruction and recycling of your electronics. eCycle Florida is your go-to when looking for an electronic recycling center in Tampa.