How often do you update your phone, change your devices, and replace your electronics at work or at home? Most of us don’t think about environmental considerations when we buy the latest iPhone or the latest generation LCD TV, but the way we dispose of the e-waste has a major impact on the environment.
The lifespan of electronics is short, so annually, about 50 million tons of e-Waste are generated globally, and the amount of e-Waste generated in the Republic of Moldova is about 10,000 tons.
If an electrical appliance that you own has the sign “a barred wheeled bin”, it means that the appliances are in the category of a separate collection.
These signs warn that electrical and electronic waste must not be disposed of with your household waste or in the wild.
Fortunately, almost one hundred percent of e-waste is recyclable.
WHY SHOULD WE RECYCLE WASTE?
There are two important reasons why we recommend that you hand over and recycle WEEE, namely:
They contain heavy metals, greenhouse gases or non-biodegradable materials that are extremely harmful to health and the environment;
With a very high degree of recycling, between 85 and 90%, large and valuable quantities of secondary raw materials will be recovered.
At EU level, recycling of WEEE is a priority, with Member States being required to integrate and implement specific measures in this regard. Also, in Romania, the fines for individuals who do not separate WEEE at home to be handed over in the specialized collection system are between 500 and 1,000 lei, and for legal entities the fines amount to between 5,000 lei and 10,000 lei. she. Do you know any details about the obligatory collection with us? Is the government going to get involved? If you know, write in the comments.
WHAT ARE THE HAZARDOUS SUBSTRANCES IN DEEs?
Hazardous substances in WEEE and their harmful effects on the environment and health include:
Freon degrades the ozone layer and contributes to global warming.
Brominated flame retardants (organo-bromine compounds that are applied to products to inhibit or slow the ignition of combustible materials in the event of fire) do not degrade naturally in the environment, with substantial adverse effects.
PVC is a chlorine-containing plastic and is mainly used to insulate cables. Its combustion processing is inadequate and generates emissions that remain in the environment for a long time, being the most toxic after radioactive materials.
Mercury is found in energy-saving light bulbs and lamps, batteries, old appliances, switches and relays. It mainly affects the kidneys and nervous system.
WAYS TO REDUCE ELECTRONIC WASTE
1. We assess the need at the acquisition stage
We do NOT buy if it is not needed. It would be correct to inform ourselves and ask ourselves if a new device (gadget) is really needed or we simply “want” this device because we were seduced by a beautifully presented story through a commercial.
This recommendation is the first and most important – “zero moment” – because if the product is not procured, no waste will be generated. It may not be appropriate to purchase the device at this time, but to postpone the purchase for later – for example, in the case of a TV that will be cheaper in a year, will have more features, more diagonal and will consume less electricity, we just have to win.
2. We focus on quality
We choose to buy a quality product, even if it may be more expensive. They often have a longer lifespan, respectively amortize expenses, but also reduce extra waste. We choose equipment that has a longer life or can be used repeatedly, such as rechargeable batteries.
3. We extend the life of the device
We keep the device in working order for as long as possible. We buy a protective phone case and glass, keep the device clean, and avoid overcharging the battery.
We’re fixing the device. Usually, when equipment fails, only one part is damaged, and in most cases the device can be repaired. Most of the time, the repair will cost us much less than buying a new device.
We change the destination for further use of the device. In this case, we can use a secondary function of the device. For example, an old mobile phone can be used as a GPS navigator in the car.
4. We share, rent or exchange
Each of these options avoids turning a product into waste. Therefore, you can use certain devices, such as phone chargers, with your family members, or share a drill with your neighbor, and so on. At the same time, you might want to try renting for a double use. We manage to exclude storage due to non-use of the electronic device, but also to earn money from rent.
5. We refurbish
Refurbishment is intended to return the device to its normal (usable) condition. We purchase refurbished products or through such programs we can ship old equipment to electronics stores. Such programs are implemented by some stores in our country, such as Orange, Smart, Darwin, etc.
6. We donate
By donating we manage to give a second life to the equipment, and someone will be happy that he received what he wanted. We can donate to charities, orphanages, people in need various electrical and electronic equipment, of course in working order.
7. We sell
If the device is in working order, instead of throwing it in the trash or storing it, an alternative method would be to sell the device.
8. We get rid of eco-responsible
We dispose of electronics and batteries in specially designed recycling bins. For example, on the Map of e-waste collection points you can find the nearest location where ECORECYCLING dumpsters are located, it is also the @ecircular platform, or @faradeseuri, where you can see the collection points of several authorized operators.
It should be noted that within the “𝙍𝙚𝙘𝙞𝙘𝙡𝙖̆𝙢 𝘿𝙀𝙀𝙀 𝙨̦𝙞 𝙧𝙚𝙖𝙡𝙞𝙯𝙖̆𝙢 𝙊𝘿𝘿” project, , implemented by EcoDigital, with the support of the GEF – PNUD Small Grants Program UNDP Moldova, 70 dumpsters were installed for the collection of electronic and electrical waste, by the authorized operator @ECORECYCLING .