eWaste by the Numbers— What You Need to Know
One of the biggest challenges the world faces today is recycling electronic waste — also known as eWaste.
The problem of eWaste has been growing at an astounding rate over the past two decades as the world has seen technology like smartphones, tablets, eReaders, and eInk devices join computers and laptops among an array of devices where ever-newer models replace last year’s outmoded product.
It’s a problem for businesses, and it’s a problem for the environment.
Here are some remarkable statistics about eWaste today.
The United States vs. the World
In the United States, we produce a staggering amount of eWaste:
- In 2019, in the U.S., 6.92 million tons of eWaste was generated
- In that same year, the value of that eWaste (if you were to break it down into raw materials) was almost $7.5 billion
- Unfortunately, little of that value was recouped — in the U.S., only 15% of eWaste was recycled in 2019
- This has a major impact on our environment because most eWaste ends up in landfills. It’s estimated that over 40% of the heavy metals currently in American landfills come from eWaste
But the United States isn’t the only culprit here — in fact, it’s not even close.
- Asia is responsible for the majority of eWaste produced — in fact, at 22.6 million tons, Asia created almost double the amount of eWaste that the Americas produced. Europe came in third with almost 11 million tons of eWaste generated in 2019
- That being said, Asia isn’t quite the polluter that it seems from the raw numbers — per capita, it’s actually Europe that produces the most eWaste per person at almost 36 lbs., while Asia only produces 12.3 lbs. of eWaste per person.
- America doesn’t even come second! That honor is reserved for Oceania, at 35.4 lbs. In fact, in the Americas, each person generates only 29.2 lbs. of eWaste each year
- That eWaste takes up serious space — 2019’s eWaste weighed as much as 350 cruise ships!
- It’s a serious waste of money and resources. It’s estimated that if all the gold, silver, and platinum in eWaste was fully recycled, it would be worth around $12 billion in both financial and natural capital.
EWaste may be a growing problem for the world, but you can do your part. In Alabama, businesses, non-profits, educational institutions, medical clinics and more turn to Protec Recycling. Work with Protec to recycle all your eWaste to help protect the environment while disposing of electronics that may have sensitive data properly.
Not All eWaste Recyclers are the Same
When your business decides to help with the growing eWaste problem, the first thing to know is that not all professional recyclers are the same. Many export eWaste to developing countries where impoverished people disassemble the electronics with no safety procedures, exposing them to toxic materials. Others take what they can easily resell and drop the rest off at the nearest landfill.
At Protec Recycling, we have a zero landfill guarantee. 100% of the electronics we collect are recycled or sold for reuse. Our processes are secure, green, and simple.
Protec specializes in the secure, compliant data destruction of eWaste, especially eWaste that contains sensitive customer or client information. We are AAA certified by the National Association for Information Destruction (NAID) and compliant with regulations such as HIPAA, FACTA, HITECH, and GRAMM-LEACH-BLILEY ACT.
Choosing Protec as Your Partner
If you are in need of Protec’s recycling services, call our office in Homewood Alabama at 205-549-2120 to schedule an appointment or a pickup on-site from one of our mobile shredding trucks.