The World Cup spikes desperate need for electronic recycling program
The 2014 World Cup has now come and gone, but it has left many Brazilians scratching their heads on what to do now. (And no, we aren’t just talking about their soccer team!)
The Situation in Brazil
As the event is getting nearer, the sales of the TV sets have skyrocketed in Brazil. According to the National Association of Electronic Producers, the country has experienced a huge upsurge in the production of TV sets as compared to the last year. What this means is that the year will end with Brazilians having 20 million more TV sets than they had before the world cup started.
It is no rocket science to figure out what happens with an old TV set when a new one comes into a home. It results in Brazilians scratching their heads on what to do with it. A study by the World Bank concluded that TVs account for the biggest type of e-waste in Brazil.
Despite the volume, Brazil does not have any laws on electronic recycling and handling. Brazil will have to decide on the future of its electronic recycling efforts quickly. Next year, the country will be cluttered with abandoned TV sets and parts, thus posing a potential health risk for citizens and the environment. Not to mention, as Brazil’s middle-class increases, the jump from outdated TVs to plasma and LCD produces more hard-to-recycle CRT material.
What About the US?
Thankfully, the United States does not just have existing laws on electronic recycling but is reinstating more of them with an increase in the need for them. At the federal level, there is still a lot that needs to be done as we have seen bills being stuck in House subcommittees for years. However, we have seen major developments at the state level pertaining to electronic waste and recycling.
State Laws Regarding E-Recycling
California won the race in 2003 when it became the first state to pass an e-recycling law. Currently, there are 22 states that still do not have any laws catering to electronic recycling. However, private electronic recycling companies, government bodies, and non-profit organizations offer programs for e-waste collection and recycling, managing the better part of the national electronic recycling solutions.
Electronics are banned from trash cans in most of the cities and states as well. In order to ensure that electronic waste is funneled through proper channels and the collection objectives and goals are attained, some American states have passed and implemented bans that keep people from dumping their old electronics in landfills. It was never a sustainable or appropriate end-of-life treatment or solution to get rid of electronic waste as harmful substances leak out from the electronics and contaminate the soil as well as seep into water bodies and intoxicate them.
The recycling sector is informal and mostly unregulated in nature. This gives way to many irresponsible and non-compliant companies to export electronic waste to developing countries. This proves dangerous for not just the health of the people in those emerging countries who handle the waste but also for the environment of those countries. Electronic recycling companies need to comply with the R2 standards and practise responsible and appropriate electronic recycling solutions. CompuCycle ensures robust environmental and workplace compliance of the R2 as well as other local and international standards and regulations.
What is the Solution?
The solution is quite simple and straightforward. Until we wait for more laws to take shape and get implemented, all businesses and individuals need to hand over their old electronics and IT assets to electronic recycling companies that are compliant with the current regulations and carry out responsible electronic recycling solutions. The recyclers should be equipped with state-of-the-art equipment and be certified and credible. They should test the e-waste for their secondary and primary functions as per the R2 standards and sell them to be reused if they are working or can be repaired.
This will not only generate revenue streams but create employment opportunities as well. Reusing electronics provide less privileged communities access to affordable technology. It enhances natural resource preservation and saves energy, offering huge benefits to the environment. All this is possible if people are aware of their responsibilities towards the preservation of nature and the harmful impacts of electronic e-waste.
CompuCycle is one of the most responsible electronic recycling companies in the country. Our electronic recycling solutions are fully responsible. We create utility for our customers so that more and more electronics can get recycled the proper way. Individuals can drop off their unwanted devices at any of our several drop-off facilities, and we offer pick-up of IT assets from companies. We strive to make America a country that regulates its e-waste industry so perfectly that even a world cup cannot put an adverse effect on our environment.