Posts Tagged ‘E-waste’

Recycling for Charities: Our Earth Day Challenge

Thursday, March 18th, 2010

Where is your old cell phone? How about your iPod that broke last month? Most likely they have been sent to their final resting place — your junk drawer. Why not do something positive with it, instead of letting it sit to collect dust?

So, are you up for the challenge? If you are visiting the Royal Oak area between March 22 and April 24 you will have the opportunity to recycle your used and broken electronics, including cell phones, iPhones, pagers, iPods, PDAs, MP3 players, and digital cameras. Leading up to the Earth Day weekend, Recycling for Charities will have collection boxes placed in participating businesses and stores in downtown Royal Oak. Individuals can drop off their old electronics and may even receive a discount for being green (a list of participating businesses, locations, and discounts can be found at the end of this post)! Feel free to snap a picture of yourself doing your green deed and upload it to Facebook or Twitter. Don’t forget to mention us so that we can show others how you helped make a difference this Earth Day!

When thrown away cell phones create  tons of garbage in our landfills. Just one is enough to pollute about 1 Olympic sized swimming pool of water!  Recycling for Charities is giving you the opportunity to help the environment while celebrating the 40th Anniversary of Earth Day. The challenge to keep our landfills clean of e-waste will culminate with the Earth Day community celebration in downtown Royal Oak, April 25. By participating you can help prevent electronic waste from entering our water sources and landfills, where they can continue to release harmful chemicals. All you need to do is bring your used or broken wireless electronics, and RFC will do the rest. Going green is that easy, and you can write it off on your taxes!

RFC will also be taking their mission to the streets of Royal Oak in their eco-friendly Smart Car. Participants will have the chance to get up close and personal with the Smart Car and will learn how this tiny vehicle is helpful to the environment.

Only 10 percent of used and broken cell phones are recycled each year. What is your excuse? You can help Recycling for Charities eliminate e-waste this Earth Day by donating your old electronics to local stores or by bringing them to the community event on April 25 from 12-3:30 pm. Let’s help make Michigan a little “greener” this Earth Day, together!

Participating Businesses:

1 ) AlexEmilio Salon – The goal at AlexEmilio is to make an impact on your life, just by changing how you look. They want you to feel amazing when you leave and continue to feel that way. The salon offers haircuts and color along with nail and facial treatments.

409 South Main St., Royal Oak, MI 48067

2 ) Bean & Leaf Café – This café provides their customers with environmentally friendly cups that are 100% bio-degradable and offers many varieties of fair trade organic coffees. Customers can also browse the internet while enjoying their cup of coffee thanks to the café’s free Wi-Fi. When you buy a $20 gift card, you will get a drink of any size on the house, and all of those who work in Royal Oak can receive 10% off their order- be sure to mention Recycling for Charities!

106 S. Main St., Royal Oak, MI 48962

3 ) Café Muse – Voted as having one of the best sandwiches in America by Esquire Magazine, Café Muse offers an array of items for breakfast and lunch. They also pride themselves on their natural cuisine, using fresh ingredients and products that are humanely treated and grown without the use of pesticides or growth hormones. Make sure to look for a blurb on Recycling for Charities in the list of specials at Café Muse!

418 S. Washington Ave., Royal Oak, MI 48067

4 ) Douglas J Aveda Institute –Douglas J provides cutting edge cosmetology education. With its affiliation with Aveda, Douglas J is able to share and exchange curriculum ideas and learn the latest innovations in areas like cosmetology and esthiology. Students provide services such as haircuts and color, as well as spa, facial, and nail treatments under the supervision of their instructors. All donations dropped off at Douglas J will benefit the Oakland Land Conservancy.

409 S. Center St., Royal Oak, MI 48067

5 ) Scout – This eclectic shop sells art work, home décor, vintage finds, pottery, and textiles… just to name a few. When you drop off your old electronics at Scout you will receive 10% off of all candles.

508 S. Washington Ave., Royal Oak, MI 48067

6 ) Shine – When visiting this trendy store expect to find unique bags, jewelry, pillows, books, body products, and much more! You will receive 10% off your entire purchase when you drop off your old electronics at Shine!

621 S. Washington Ave., Royal Oak, MI 48068

7 ) TASI Juice Bar – Known as the ‘healthy side of fast food’ TASI serves up great smoothies and fresh snacks. As a bonus to the environmentally-conscious,  the wheatgrass used in their delicious drinks is organically grown!

204 West 4th St., Royal  Oak, MI 48067

8 ) Titzy’s – The philosophy of Titzy’s is to bring great and unique maternity, infant and nursing wear to people at a fair price. They also offer organic items such as lotion for mothers and babies. Those who drop off their electronics at Titzy’s will receive 10% off their entire purchase!

506 S. Washington Ave., Royal Oak, MI 48067

Not going to be in the Royal Oak area? You can still do your part to help us reach our goal by donating items to be recycled right here on our website.

Recycling Electronics: The E-Waste Laws

Monday, January 18th, 2010

As thousands and thousand of electronics continue to be disposed in landfills, the e-waste dilemma is starting to garnish attention. Not just anyone’s attention neither, but that of state legislators. As of now, nineteen states have implemented some sort of electronics waste program. New York could become the twentieth state if they are able to defeat the Computer Electronic Association (CEA) and the Information Technology Industry Council (ITI).

Oral hearings are scheduled to begin next week between the CEA/ITI and New York City in a court hearing concerning the city’ proposed recycling program. If the program passes, manufacturers will be forced to have more of a role in the recycling of their products. On the other side of things if the program is denied there is a fear that this could hurt existing programs and stall chances for future ones.

While keeping e-waste out of landfills is the main reason such programs are being put in place. There is still another issue that the proposed recycling program could solve. Forcing manufacturers to be responsible for their products at the end of their life cycle shifts the cost of recycling to the state and municipalities to the users and manufacturers of those products. This would cancel out the recycling fees for everyone and hold just the consumers and manufacturers responsible.

The bill was originally passed in 2008. It was suppose to begin collection from manufacturers in 2009 and with fines for residents beginning this year. In the bill there is a rule that deems the manufacturers are responsible for direct pick up of anything over 15 pounds. Manufacturers believe that this rule in the law is unconstitutional because it requires situational burdens and non-existing expenses. Many supporters of the bill believe that the CEA and ITI are interpreting the bill in the most burdensome view in order to help get their way.

Being the first law passed in the city that deals with e-waste, manufacturers are not ready for change. They don’t see the possibilities in increasing recycling efforts, job creation, and saving in expenses. All of this will be figured out in the coming months as the State defends it plan against the CEA and ITI. If the law is passed, New York City residents will be required to start recycling electronics starting July 1st.

The e-waste dilemma isn’t just going to go away. More and more programs are taking an initiative to help solve this ongoing issue. Recycling for Charities is just one example of programs that are set up to reduce e-waste pollution. Not only does Recycling for Charities keep e-waste out of landfills, but it gives back funding directly to charities. That is just on a non-profit level. If states continue to pursue e-waste legislation more and more programs and opportunities will develop to continue to help the cause.

Recycling for Charities & Detroit’s Eastern Market

Tuesday, November 10th, 2009

The smart car and Recycling for Charities made an appearance at Detroit’s Eastern Market on Saturday November 7th, 2009. Recycling for Charities and Eastern Market partnered up to hold an e-waste recycling drive for the public. Set up behind shed 5 of Eastern Market, Recycling for Charities had the smart car on display as the public stop by to donate old cell phones, digital cameras, PDAs, and MP3 players.
RFC at Eastern Market

The electronics were accepted whether they were in working condition or not. For each item donated, Eastern Market will receive a monetary donation to be used towards their organization. Many of these electronics either end up in landfills polluting the environment or are stored around the house somewhere collecting dust.

While at Eastern Market, Recycling for Charities was given the chance to not only receive electronics to be recycled but also the opportunity to interact with the public. The smart car was on display catching the attention of the crowd as they walked by. People then became curious and began coming to the table to find out more about Recycling for Charities.

As the old electronic devices were being collected consumers were being taught exactly why it is important to recycle electronics and the harm of e-waste. Many of them were unaware of the problems caused by e-waste and that they could be a part of the solution. They soon realized that they were not only donating to Eastern Market for a good cause, but also doing the environment a favor by reducing e-waste.
RFC at Eastern Market

Overall, 43 items were collected to be recycled for a monetary value that will go directly back to Eastern Market. Recycling for Charities would like to thank everyone who stopped by to donate and learn more about the organization. Also, we would especially like to thank Eastern Market for their support and hospitality, which allowed this drive to be successful. Hopefully, in the near future Recycling for Charities and Eastern Market can partner up again to put on another e-waste recycling drive.

Kenya’s E-Waste Disaster

Monday, October 12th, 2009

Environmentalists warn that unregulated disposal of e-waste with toxic elements that can persist for hundreds of years can be particularly alarming given the expected rise in volumes in the next decade.

E-waste is made up of televisions, computer monitors, VCRs, stereos, copiers fax machines and smaller electrons like the ones that RFC recycles, such as cell phones, PDAs, iPods and digital cameras. This e-waste has become one of the fastest growing segments of Kenya’s total refuse, according to the National Environment Management Authority (Nema).

The concern is that Kenya is being exposed to this type of pollution because of a failure to manage this waste. Kenya will experience long-term and costly environmental damage whose impact is believed to be felt in the emergence of new diseases, change in weather patterns and food insecurity. Something this devastating will take many decades to reverse.

Kenya’s less formal dumping sites are homes to electronic gadgets with some of the most lethal toxins. Chemicals such as mercury, cadmium and lead are some of the few to contaminate ground water, strip the earth of its nutrients and has damage human tissues and organs.

In Nairobi, the impact of this carefree disposal of e-waste is already beginning to be felt in Dandora estate where contact with dump-site material has seen a steep rise in the number of children diagnosed with lead poisoning. Dandora is the location of Nairobi’s largest dump-site that takes most of the 4,000 tons of garbage that the city residents generate daily. There is a significant connection between the two.

Without regulated or proper means of disposal, most Kenyans have resorted to burning trash as their optimal method of disposing their e-waste. Acts like this increase their danger to the environment. By incinerating these gadgets it is releasing these toxic chemicals and metals into the air and ground. The method does not completely decompose the metals.

This is an issue that is not going away. In fact, it is increasing. It’s one thing to be aware of the problem, but another to be a part of the solution. It’s time we all make a change.

New York City Pitches Door-to-Door E-waste Collection Law

Wednesday, July 29th, 2009

On July 31, 2009, a new law will go into effect in New York City that will require manufacturers to provide free, door-to-door electronics collection to city residents.  It is New York City’s way of attempting to keep hazardous items, such as e-waste, out of landfills.

Yet, per usual, no law can ever be introduced without some backlash.  Two main critics include the Consumer Electronics Association (CEA) and the Information Technology Industry Council (ITIC); they have decided to sue to city.  They claim that this law will only put unnecessary trucks into neighborhoods, leading to pollution and congestion.

Other reasons behind their law suit are that NYC is asking manufacturers to pay for the pick-up and disposal of the items, even items they did not produce, and to do it free of charge to the consumer.  Furthermore, they must track and report all of their sales and recycling amounts.

Many people feel that this is just one extreme method to have manufacturers assume more responsibility for their products and that this is a poor way to do complete the task.  Others feel that this is a great interaction between the government, consumers, and manufacturers because the government is finally delivering justice to consumers by forcing manufacturers to be responsible for the products they produce.

What are your thoughts: do you think this is the most effective way to achieve the goal of encouraging e-waste recycling?

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