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History of Electronic Waste in The Recycling Industry

Electronic waste and the recycling industry have come a long way in the modern sense. Though this is the case, more people will need to continually use these services before we can see a benefit to the environment and the overall price of electronics.

In the mid-1970’s the electronic waste recycling industry took off when the resource conservation and recovery act was passed. Until this act was passed it was not illegal to dump electronic waste in the United States. Up until this time, there were instances in which landfills would refuse large portions of electronic waste and the waste was dumped into the ocean. One of the most severe instances in which this happened was when a barge in the 1980’s dumped over 14,000 tons of waste in Philadelphia which then proceeded to go to sea. The waste then made its way into the Caribbean, and eventually Asia.

The law changed significantly through the Basel convention where a treaty was introduced to reduce hazardous waste movement and proper disposal of electronic waste. These were small and incremental changes to E-waste recycling, but they were important to changing mindsets and keeping people informed on the dangers of electronic waste dumping.

Although we have come a long way with protection from the law in electronic waste, only 12.5% of the E-waste worldwide is recycled. All we need is for more people to step forward and continually recycle their older electronics. Changing mindsets and making sure that e-waste is handled accordingly remains very important.

If you would like to learn more about electronic waste and how you can dispose of it appropriately, contact our staff today. We can let you know more about how to manage your e-waste for business or personal use.

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 for electronic recycling in Tampa.

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What You Should Know About Wastewater

It’s easy to take water for granted. However, clean, potable water is not always a given—less than 1% of the world’s freshwater is easily accessible to humans, and increasing water pollution threatens to make it even less accessible in the foreseeable future. Wastewater presents a genuine risk to much of the world’s population, as well as to the environment that people depend on. Proper industrial wastewater treatment, along with preventative measures elsewhere, will prove vital to the livelihood of future generations.

Where Wastewater Comes From

Wastewater is broadly defined as any water that has been used by humans. Much of it comes from industrial processes—nearly any manufacturing involves water in some fashion, such as direct use as input material, processing other materials or use in maintaining industrial equipment, and this water usage totals billions of gallons a day. Outside of industrial plants, domestic use is a large source of water usage, one that most people are aware of. However, another source that is overlooked is storm runoff, which can pick up harmful substances off of impermeable surfaces and bring it to lakes, rivers or groundwater reservoirs.

Lasting Effects of Wastewater

Drinking dirty water is obviously not good for people, but the effects of wastewater has can be more insidious when it harms local ecosystems. Some possible results of wastewater buildup include:

  • Oxygen depletion threatening aquatic animals;
  • Harmful algal or bacterial blooms, resulting from fertilizer runoff, that produce toxins;
  • Buildup of toxic heavy metals in fish populations, potentially accumulating in people that eat these fish;
  • Chemicals from pharmaceutical or other personal products causing unforeseen effects in people exposed to them.

Unchecked, wastewater accumulation can destroy ecosystems and communities, and reversing its effects is difficult, if not impossible, when the damage has already been done. For this reason, it’s vital that wastewater receives proper treatment instead of being dumped directly into the environment, and construction should strive to minimize the risk of runoff caused by roads and pavement.…