How to manage e-waste: Smart ways to recycle your technology

how to manage your e-waste

Eyeing the new Apple iPhone or looking for a brand new smart LED TV? Great! But what will you do with your old hand set or TV?

It’s important to manage your e-waste properly to ensure that the toxic substances found in electronic goods such as lead and mercury, don’t contaminate our soil or water (that’s what will happen if they are dumped in a landfill).

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India is already the 5th largest producer of e-waste globally, discarding nearly 18.5 lakh tons of electronic waste every year.

So what can you do? Check out tips on how to manage e-waste and recycle your technology smartly.

  1. Your trash could be someone else’s treasure: The easiest way to reduce e-waste is to pass your discarded products that are in working condition to a friend, family member, or house help. OR, you can also donate them to a charity.
  2. Upcycle e-waste: If you are the creative sort, and are looking for some funky décor items or furniture, consider upcycling your e-waste. Many of these can be executed with the help of an electrician and a carpenter. Check out these great ideas! Alternately, simply sell your handset in the 2nd hand market. Most mobile phone stores will pay you in cash for an outdated product.
  3. Participate in a recycling program: There are two ways you can do this. Most OEMs (phone brands) have take back programs and will take your phone for proper recycling and help with disposal of electronics. In return they will probably offer you a discount on your next purchase or even some cash back. We’ve put together a list of the take back programs for most major brands:
    • Samsung: Samsung’s Take Back & Recycling program is an initiative to encourage e-recycling. You can drop your mobiles and other products at a nearby location or avail pickup services.
    • Apple: Apple lets you recycle your device by sending a request at the email: apple.consumer.return@simsrecycling.com.
    • Motorola: Motorola has set up ECOMOTO Takeback bins at select locations in New Delhi, Mumbai, Kolkata, and Bangalore, where you can drop mobile phones and accessories.
    • Micromax: Micromax has partnered with 3R Recycler, to collect e-waste.
    • Sony: If you are looking for disposal of your Sony device, here is a list of the collection centers.
    • HP: HP provides collection points for customers to drop off used HP hardware products. You can contact service centers to know the drop-off locations. They help in computer recycling, printer recycling and more.
    • Lenovo: Lenovo has teamed up with Sims Recycling Solutions for e-recycling. Check the list of drop locations here.
    • Canon: Canon has partnered with authorized recyclers for e-waste disposal including printers, copiers, scanners, and cameras in an environment friendly way. Check out the contact details here.
    • Dell: Recycle your old electronics through Dell’s consumer recycling program. Submit your request by filling your details on their website.

There are also e-waste recycling companies that you can get in touch with and help manage e-waste.

  • Karma Recycling is an e-waste collector and electronics buy-back firm authorized by the Delhi Pollution Control Committee. Visit their website, submit your details, schedule a pickup, and get paid for your old electronics. For a complete listing of e-waste collection centers in Delhi, click here.
  • EcoCentric Management is a leading e-waste company with offices in Mumbai, Pune, Ahmedabad, and Nagpur. The recycler is ISO 9001 certified and is licensed by the Maharashtra Pollution Control Board. You can connect with them by submitting your details here.
  • In Pune, SWaCH or Solid Waste Collection and Handling is one of the recyclers authorized by the Pune Municipal Corporation. It is India’s first wholly owned cooperative of self-employed waste pickers providing e-waste collection and disposal.
  • If you are in Bengaluru, BinBag offers doorstep step service to pick up e-waste. BinBag works with certified recyclers and is incubated at IIM Bangalore.

Here’s a quick view of the recycling process itself, so you know what goes on when you manage your waste properly:

  • A recycling center first inspects the devices to see if it can be reused. Based on the evaluation, the device is refurbished and resold, or recycled.
  • If it can’t be reused, items are dismantled and materials such as circuit boards, batteries, glass and wires, separated.
  • Valuable metals like gold, silver, tin and aluminum are either extracted manually or mechanically.
  • Mechanical extraction involves passing the components through a shredder to break them into small chunks.
  • The extracted components are sold to recyclers for use in the manufacture of new products.

If you’re aware of any other e-waste recycling companies, do let us know!

Also Read: 11 Ways to Shrink Your Footprint

4 thoughts on “How to manage e-waste: Smart ways to recycle your technology”

  1. Ritika Wadhwa June 10, 2016

    Very useful article .. Stuck with so much ewaste . Will contact the recycling agencies

    • Garima Punia June 13, 2016

      Thank you Ritika. Please share with others you think will benefit, and also your experience with re-cycling agencies so others can benefit from your experience!

  2. himanshu sharma August 19, 2016

    I am seriously working for zero waste management in schools please help me

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