E-waste or electronic waste refers to a large spectrum of used electronics or electrical devices ranging from laptops to refrigerators that are discarded. After discarded, these items could end up in various routes such as refurbishment, reuse, component salvage or material recovery. Improper handling processes could lead to adverse health and environmental problems.
With rapid digitization, we are using and discarding more and more e-waste in recent years. In Singapore alone, 60,000 tons are disposed yearly and only 6% is recycled. To put this into perspective, we are throwing away 220 Airbus A380 airplanes worth of e-waste every year. This is equivalent to you throwing 6 mobile phones every month! (my iPhone just sweat a little when I typed this)
So why should my company or I care?
Because your customers care! The largest portion of the population, the Millennials, are increasing sustainability conscious and this is likely to make up the bulk of your customer population or will grow into key roles in years to come. One of the best sustainability practices you can have is to dispose responsibly and recycle as much as possible. This will boost your company’s reputation and appeal more to increasingly environmentally conscious consumers. It is a win for your business, the environment and humanity! Triple wins! And on a personal level, it is just the right thing to do. Your mother will be proud.
Okay! So chuck everything in the recycle bin?
Woah woah woah, hold your horses! Unfortunately, Singapore’s national blue recycling bins do not accept e-waste and you should check out these locations instead. However, if your e-wastes have data/memory containing devices, it is not a good idea to just drop them off at the recycling locations. You will run a risk of leaking precious information to undesired eyes. You should engage professional e-waste and secure data disposal companies like KGS Pte Ltd to help. They have trained professionals to advise and carry out proper data destruction (such as degaussing or shredding) before recycling your e-waste and have a certificate of destruction to prove it. This ensures that none of your confidential data has any chance to be leaked out and the waste is disposed in a sustainable manner.
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