- on Education & Information
- Published in issue 11/2004 on page 0
Bring out your Dead
Solutions to electronic waste
In 2006 European legislation on electrical and electronic waste comes into full force. Across North America, states are passing laws to deal with electronics waste. These measures reflect a hidden but growing problem.As any electronics enthusiast who has recently tried to repair a consumer product will know, it is more likely to be cheaper to dispose of and replace an item than to repair it. Worse still, many items on the market are likely to be in good working order at the end of their life. The keen electronics consumer faces a dilemma; a desire to own the latest technology leaves perfectly good products obsolete. At the root of this problem manufacturers are beginning to supersede their own technologies and products at an unsustainable rate. The EU estimates that 4% of household waste consists of electrical and electronics products and this figure is increasing at a worrying rate of 16-28% every five years.A glance at the statistics and listening to green organizations would suggest a depressing future. There exists however, a movement to exploit the electronics waste problem where a positive attitude and creativity results in novel solutions.