Erase E-Waste

Regift or Recycle Smart Phones




Sunny studio/Shutterstock.com

When replacing holiday purchases of smartphones and other electronic devices, don’t just trash the old ones. Manufacturing electronics consumes many resources and discarded waste can leak harmful chemicals into ecosystems. There are far better ways to redirect and repurpose them.

Besides trading in phones for a rebate, another good option is transferring them to an official recycling program that makes sure all components are dealt with properly. Some states offer special provisions. Check the E-Cycling Central website at eiae.org. Major phone makers and carriers offer recycling programs, and some retailers accept select electronic devices.

Best of all, give a device a new life by gifting it. RecyclingForCharities.com accepts obsolete personal electronic devices by mail; the donor selects a charity to receive the proceeds. ShelterAlliance.net, CellPhonesForSoldiers.com and Phones4Charity.org are kindred organizations.

AmericanCellPhoneDrive.org lets users find nearby charity recycling initiatives via zip code. It provides scholarships for U.S. children that have lost a parent through warfare or terrorism, feeds malnourished children in Asia, builds low-income housing and donates prepaid calling cards to military personnel.

According to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, other unwanted electronic devices can be recycled so that incorporated copper, steel and glass can be recovered and reused. Other materials like lead (in circuit board solder, glass cathode ray tubes of many TVs and computer screens, and batteries) and mercury (in fluorescent backlights of many flat-panel screen displays) can be captured and recycled, instead of polluting the environment.

Small appliances like toasters, coffee makers and clothing irons aren’t considered e-waste and generally aren’t recyclable because they are made of a mix of plastic and metal. Using them for many years helps.


This article appears in the December 2017 issue of Natural Awakenings.

Edit ModuleShow Tags

More from Natural Awakenings

School Activities Can Foster Head Injuries

The beginning of the school year can create situations that invite concussion injuries for athletes participating in cheerleading, soccer, lacrosse, football and gymnastic activities.

Productive Sleep Sessions are Vital to Good Health

Getting a good night’s sleep is one of the most important things we can do for our mind and body.

Expert Help with Stressful Life Issues

Susan Curry, the founder of InteriorWerx, practices a modality of personal coaching and healing on a metaphysical, spiritual frequency.

The Resiliency Institute Opens Enrollment for 2019 Classes

Early bird registration is open at The Resiliency Institute, in Naperville, for 2019 courses that begin in February and March and meet once a month on a Saturday or Sunday.

Learn the Mystic Science of Creating Synchronicities

Her wisdom is a perfect convergence of two worlds, the worldly and the spiritual; and the scientific and transcendental.

Add your comment:
Edit ModuleShow Tags

See More »This Month

New Birth Certificate Policy in Effect

Rights to obtain copies of original Illinois birth certificates of adopted or surrendered adults age 21 and over have changed, now allowing greater availability to these important documents.

New Programs at Wilmette’s Zero Balancing Wellness Center

The Zero Balancing Wellness Center is offering new fall programs including beginning Zero Balancing classes and wellness presentations.

November is Epilepsy Awareness Month

The Epilepsy Foundation of Greater Chicago observes National Epilepsy Awareness Month in November with events to raise awareness.

More Than Subtle Beauty

These are grasses, plants, shrubs and trees that have adapted to and thrive in a particular region or area—in our case, the Upper Midwest. When used wisely, you’ll find them a rewarding choice.

Finding What Makes Us Happy

A brand-new luxury car, an amazing home, designer clothing, a loving spouse, wonderful children; if only we had these things, we would be happy—temporarily.

The Wheel of Co-Creation

The Wheel of Co-Creation, created by renowned thought leader Barbara Marx Hubbard, is a “whole system” worldview that identifies 12 sectors of endeavor in an active, healthy and functioning society.