Most of us have drawers and cupboards at home that are full to bursting with redundant technology. With most of us upgrading our phones on a yearly basis and doing the same with consoles and TVs, it’s no surprise that there is lots of abandoned technology lying around.
The big question is what to do with all of it. We can’t simply throw it away can we? That would not be the best decision we have ever made in terms of our social or economic conscience. The impact on the planet of all the mobiles and gadgets simply being tossed away would be catastrophic, which is why we need to think more seriously about recycling. This applies to all areas of our lives but is particularly true when electrical goods or items are involved.
The reasons for recycling are essentially two-fold. Firstly, all those devices would take millennia or even longer to decompose. That’s not exactly going to look nice and we can’t even imagine the damage it would do to the local environment. There’s no getting around the fact that these things all contain parts and chemicals that we wouldn’t really like to get into the food chain or water supply. Secondly, the minerals and materials in phones and gadgets are limited and have to come from somewhere. To replace all the minerals that would be lost if we threw these things away would mean more mining and a greater human cost around the world. This is a genuinely great incentive to recycle.
Is there a better way of recycling?
When it comes to recycling there are a few options. Most supermarkets, local rubbish tips and recycling centres will have places for our unwanted phones and electrical goods where they will be properly disposed of. However, there might be a better way to recycle that doesn’t involve a costly breaking down of these devices and still means that everyone wins.
One man’s rubbish is another man’s treasure, as they say. Just because your console is unwanted by you, it doesn’t mean that applies to everyone else. Sell Wii consoles and other gaming devices online and you know they are going to a good home where they will be used and loved all over again. Surely the best form of recycling is one where the product is used again in its original form or even up-cycled to form part of something completely new and exciting. Of course, there is also the obvious benefit to you of having a bit of extra cash in your pocket. Everyone is a winner.
Paul Wilson loves to come up with new ways of using old things. He also writes and blogs about them and hopes that some of what he does is put into action to save the planet – whether that is going online to sell Wii consoles or recycling old mobile phones for cash.