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E Waste Generation in United States

February 11th, 2013 · No Comments

In this post we will tell you about some of the facts and figures of E Waste generation in United States.

Every coin has two sides. Just like technical advancements and alluring commercials seed the idea that “newer is fitter”. It is the same craving for new stuff which makes you discard the old ones, earlier than the end of their natural lifecycle. These degradable components of our daily lives have been given a fancy consumer-friendly name, E-waste! Every year, approximately 55 metric tons worth e-waste is dumped globally and shockingly the mercury is on a high rise!  It will be no exaggeration to call ourselves a E waste generation. We are living with it and happily contributing every day!  Today we would do a cumulative research and talk about some facts and figures of E waste generation in United States.

E Waste Generation

Where Does it Come From?

What and What not? Everything around us are potential e-wastes in their degenerated forms. United States has retained its position as the leader of modernized lifestyle nations. As such over years the growth rate of disposed electronic waste incremented many folds, it is alarming for an advanced nation like United States to not follow a planned disposal structure. According to the EPA, total disposed units for last year was a whopping 2,440,000 Tons.

Out of which only 20% was recycled and the rest was landfilled!  The major components of the e-waste includes Computers, screens, Optical units (Drives), Input and output devices, Cellphone and portable accessories. Computer systems having topped the chart with 51,900,000 units, re-enforces the belief that not all these units were backdated, out of order, or discard able.

Now, let us take a look at the sales figures. As expected the sales figures have incremented too.  About 405 million Computers (Desktop+ Laptop) were purchased in the year 2012, closely followed by  around 255 million Television purchases. While the states’ revenue has increased which is undoubtedly a milestone.We must not forget that these numbers have also pulled up the e-waste units drastically.

No wonder e-waste is the most rapidly growing municipal waste steam in the States.

Recycle. Why?

Apart from a social duty of a responsible citizen, solution. If you didn’t already know e wastes can be source of precious metals such as Gold, Zinc, Copper and Magnesium. For once stop pondering yourself about your social responsibilities and think from a business perspective. Reports reveal that only 20% of the total disposed units are recycled, which implies that there is a bright opportunity to capitalize upon the rest of the non-recycled/trashed wastes. Meticulous recycling can actually turn out to be a profitable business avenue.


Experts have held the ignorance of mass primarily responsible for such high non re-cycled units. So quite obviously, the various channels for recycling the electronic appliances and consumer durables aren’t reaching the end users. Almost everything they use turns out to be “use-n-throw”.  Some argue that recycling costs are higher than that of disposing to landfills. If compared to average landfill disposal tariffs recycling per tonne unit of e-waste would turn out to be substantially higher. However, in this calculation most of the times we miss to count the return yield by the recycled good. As, already cited earlier it might actually turn out to be a profitable avenue.

Recycle responsibly. For a sustainable future!

Tags: Environment