Recycling old electronics gives gadgets new life

Posted on Apr 13, 2017 by Theresa Lehman

Did you know that Wisconsin state law bans most electronics like computers, cell phones and TVs from Wisconsin’s landfills and incinerators?

A 2016 DNR survey estimated that Wisconsin households had 4.2 million unused cell phones, 2.1 million unused computers and 1.7 million unused TVs. The most common reason people cited for not recycling their old electronics was not knowing where or how to do so.

If you have old electronics that you are no longer using and aren’t sure where to recycle them, you can use “E-Cycle Wisconsin” to recycle electronics at nearly 400 convenient drop-off locations around the state. Many items are accepted at collection sites for no charge, though current market conditions have caused collectors to charge for some items that are more difficult to recycle, especially TVs and monitors that contain lead or mercury. Responsible recycling is still the best option to recover valuable metals, conserve landfill space, and prevent harm to the environment.

Since E-Cycle Wisconsin began in 2010, registered collectors have received nearly 250 million pounds of electronics for recycling. Nearly all electronics collected under the program are processed in Wisconsin and other Midwest states, creating jobs and keeping harmful components like lead and mercury out of the environment.

Residents can find permanent drop-off sites and upcoming special collection events in their county by visiting:

About Theresa Lehman

Dedicating her entire career to sustainable practice, Theresa has worked on more than 70 projects seeking LEED® certification utilizing the LEED®-NC, LEED®-CI, LEED®-CS, LEED®-EBOM, and LEED® for Schools green building rating systems. She has successfully certified projects that have earned LEED® certification at all four award levels including: Certified, Silver, Gold and Platinum. Her portfolio of LEED® projects includes many “Wisconsin firsts” such as the first State of Wisconsin LEED® certified project, the first healthcare facility, the first LEED®-EBOM Schools, the first LEED® for Schools project and the first zero-net energy / carbon neutral project–the Aldo Leopold Legacy Center–the “greenest building on the planet” according to Rick Fedrizzi, former President, CEO & Founding Chair, U.S. Green Building Council.

Get in touch with Theresa Lehman
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