Technology is one of the best inventions made by humankind in this generation. It has made life easier, provided more leisure opportunities, enhanced communication, and now, we are a global village, connected to one another despite the distance. However, although technology has many benefits, it has also become a threat to our environment.
With most people able to afford their own electronic gadget, especially a personal computer and mobile phones, and the fast rate of technological advancements, the rate at which we are producing e-waste is alarming. E-waste is gradually becoming one of the major waste disposal issues facing our society today.
E-waste is described as any device that uses electricity but it is old, has reached the end of life or is unwanted.
Types of e-waste
E-waste can be categorised into major groups including;
- Household apparatus such as refrigerators, freezers, dishwashers, washing machines, toasters, coffee makers, hairdryers, iron boxes, water dispensers
- Information Technology and telecommunication equipment such as mobile phones, telephones, personal computers, photocopiers, printers, scanners, laptops
- Lighting equipment such as fluorescent lamps
- Consumer and entertainment equipment such as television sets, DVD and VCD players, sound systems, electrical toothbrushes, toys and sports equipment
- Electrical and electronic tools for instance saws, screwdrivers and handheld drills
- Medical equipment including monitoring and control equipment. However, implanted and infected products are not considered as e-waste
E-waste is a threat to our environment because they pose great dangers to both living and non-living things in society.
Some of the dangers of improper e-waste disposal include:
Electronic devices are made up of valuable materials extracted from the earth’s surface. As the demand for electronic devices increases, with less of the e-waste being taken for recycling, more and more of the earth’s ores continue to be mined and excavated.
This is gradually leading to reduced levels of these resources on the earth surface, and maybe one day we will wake up and realise we do not have any of those resources anymore. In addition, a lot of energy is required to excavate the earth surfaces and to manufacture new electronic devices. This causes the greenhouse effect which is a major cause of concern to us today.
- E-waste contains poisonous materials
Many electronic devices are made of materials such as lead, mercury, chromium, cadmium and other heavy metals. When disposed of carelessly, these metals in the electronic equipment sip into the soil, water and air causing major health concerns to human beings.
The toxins can cause major health disorders such as cancers, breathing and respiratory illnesses, endocrine disturbances and many other types of diseases. Additionally, these metals contained in e-waste affect marine life and soil fertility.
- Reduces the amount of usable land
Most people do not know the proper methods of e-waste disposal. Therefore, they put their unwanted electrical appliances with the rest of their trash which ends up in a landfill. Landfills are displeasing, they attract pests and rodents, and they occupy land that could be used for other important purposes. According to statistics, e-waste is slowly becoming the most common type of waste in landfills.
- Increases cases of data security and identity theft
There is a very fast rate of advancement with electronic devices. In an attempt to keep up with the current trends, people are continually replacing their older gadgets with new ones. Therefore, most e-waste is made up of outdated materials that are still functional.
During disposal, people forget to clear their personal data from their devices which has led to increased cases of data security infringement and identity theft.
In an attempt to encourage people about conscious disposal, we are encouraged to reduce the amount of waste generated, reuse items that have not exhausted their usefulness and recycle as much as possible to save the environment. These practices should not only be adopted for household waste, but also with e-waste.
In case you have e-waste in your house that you do not know how to dispose of, then contact us at Paul’s Rubbish Removal. We are a professional company with over a decade years of experience in rubbish removal and e-waste rubbish disposal.
Contact us today at 0407 125 125 to know more about our services.