E-cycle or electronics recycling is the practice of reusing or recycling computer or electronic parts. It can be as simple as giving your laptop to one of your relatives or as complex as breaking your machine down into usable raw materials for new devices. We will tackle the benefits of e-cycle such as in the environment, in the economy and in data security.
The Environmental Benefits of e-cycle
Electronic gadgets contain metals and other materials that can be saved with the help of e-cycle. Electronics contain heavy metals such as mercury and lead and may even contain radioactive substances. With e-cycle, these chemicals can be properly disposed of and prevented from contaminating the environment. Precious metals such as gold and silver can also be obtained from electronic devices. Recycling these metals will reduce the demand to open more polluting mines and reduce extraction costs. In fact, a ton of electronic devices that undergo e-cycle can yield more gold than 17 tons of ore. More common metals such as iron, copper and aluminium saved through e-cycle also use less energy than from extracting them directly from their ore. For example, recycling aluminium costs only 10% of the energy needed to extract it from bauxite.
The Socio-economic Benefits of e-cycle
Both the economy and society benefit from e-cycle. Even the simple act of giving your old devices to charity may give a needy child the boost that he needs to become successful in life. The e-cycle industry also generates more jobs not only in recycling plants but also in e-waste clean-up projects. According to the estimates by the Environmental Protection Agency, the entire Recycling industry employs 1.1 million people with an annual payroll of around 37 billion dollars. When you get involved with e-cycle, you would add more people to the workforce and give them a better future as well.
Data Security Benefits of e-cycle
Proper e-cycle practices can prevent data security issues. Carelessly dumped electronic devices sometimes contain personal data such as credit card information and financial transactions information that may be extracted and be used for stealing your identity or your finances. In fact, investigators have found sensitive military and defense contracts from the United States in the hard drives found at the e-dumpsite at Agbogbloshie, Ghana. Criminal organizations can easily buy these hard disks at around $35 each. Although your personal information may not compromise national security, following e-cycle procedures might just save you from a lot of legal issues.
Ensure that your personal data is erased from your electronic devices before sending them to e-cycle. Ask your local e-cycle company to see if they provide data erasing services such hard disk shredding. You can also use dedicated data erasing software to erase your personal files prior to e-cycle.
In conclusion, e-cycle is beneficial to the environment, society and your personal security. You’ll have a lot to gain for yourself and others when you help with local e-cycle initiatives. We hope that the article will encourage you to start your journey on e-cycle.