Interesting Recycling Facts

  • In the United States, between 300 million and 400 million electronic items become obsolete each year, and less than 20 percent of that e-waste is recycled.
  • The average American household has at least 24 electronic products.
  • Cathode ray tubes in older TVs and computers typically contain 4-7 pounds of lead in each unit.
  • It is energy efficient to rebuild old computers, but only about 2 percent of PCs ever find their way to a second user.
  • Recycling one million desktop computers prevents the release of greenhouse gases equivalent to the annual emissions of 16,000 passenger cars.
  • ¬†Recycling raw materials from end-of-life electronics is the most effective solution to the growing e-waste problem. Most electronic devices contain a variety of materials, including metals that can be recovered for future uses.
  • Recycling one million laptops saves the energy equivalent to the electricity used by 3,657 US homes in a year.
  • ¬†By keeping electronics out of landfills, responsible recycling reduces energy demands from mining and manufacturing.
  • One metric ton of circuit boards can contain 40 to 800 times the amount of gold and 30 to 40 times the amount of copper mined from one metric ton of ore in the U.S.
  • By recycling 100 million cell phones, approximately 7,500 pounds of gold could be recovered – allowing that amount of gold to go into new products. Recovering the gold from cell phones, rather than mining it from the earth, would prevent 12 billion pounds of loose soil, sand and rock from having to be moved, mined and processed.