11 facts About E-Waste

1. 80 to 85% of electronic products were discarded in landfills or incinerators, which can release certain toxics into the air.

2. E-waste represents 2% of America's trash in landfills, but it equals 70% of overall toxic waste. The extreme amount of lead in electronics alone causes damage in the central and peripheral nervous systems, the blood and the kidneys.

3. 20 to 50 million metric tons of e-waste are disposed worldwide every year.

4. Cell phones and other electronic items contain high amounts of precious metals like gold or silver. Americans dump phones containing over $60 million in gold/silver every year.

5. Only 12.5% of e-waste is currently recycled.

6. For every 1 million cell phones that are recycled, 35,274 lbs of copper, 772 lbs of silver, 75 lbs of gold, and 33 lbs of palladium can be recovered.

7. Recycling 1 million laptops saves the energy equivalent to the electricity used by 3,657 U.S. homes in a year.

8. E-waste is still the fastest growing municipal waste stream in America, according to the EPA.

9. A large number of what is labeled as "e-waste" is actually not waste at all, but rather whole electronic equipment or parts that are readily marketable for reuse or can be recycled for materials recovery.

10. It takes 539 lbs of fossil fuel, 48 lbs of chemicals, and 1.5 tons of water to manufacture one computer and monitor.

11. Electronic items that are considered to be hazardous include, but are not limited to:Televisions and computer monitors that contain cathode ray tubes, LCD desktop monitors, LCD televisions, Plasma televisions, Portable DVD players with LCD screens.

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