Electronic waste, or e–waste, is a problem. That includes anything you plug in or need batteries to operate, especially computers, TVs, cell phones, stereos, etc. That’s because they contain some form of harmful materials such as beryllium, cadmium, mercury and lead. These materials might be trace elements, but when added up in volume, the threat to the environment is significant.
Besides adding harmful elements to the environment, improper disposal of e-waste is a recycling opportunity lost. Almost all e-waste contains some form of recyclable material, including plastic, glass and metals. It is important that any e-waste processor is fully certified in safe destruction and follow certified documented procedures to safely dispose of electronic waste.
Ask questions before you recycle! Some unscrupulous recyclers ship e-waste overseas where it is disposed of improperly, posing a threat to the environment and its’ people. Please don’t leave your e-waste at curbside or place it in a dumpster either. In McHenry County there are several recycling locations, and keep in mind, any fees you pay are to off-set costs.