Did you know electronic devices contain a variety of toxins, including arsenic, lead, beryllium and mercury within their circuitry? Simply tossing broken or unwanted electronics into the trash will crush them over time causing these dangerous toxic substances to leak into the ground and sink into the water table. This is why in 2013, Colorado banned the dumping of E-Waste in any location other than approved recycling centers.
What this means for you:
Under the ban, you are required to arrange for your electronics to be recycled, either by dropping them off or having them picked up. Recycling electronics the right way allows for these dangerous chemicals to be removed and reused or disposed of safely. This includes (but not limited to) all television sets, laptops, tablets, DVD players and video game consoles.
What should you do:
On the Alameda corridor, you actually have many options to recycle your E-Waste. Here’s the breakdown:
Annual Recycling Events:
- Earth Day Celebration: Every year, the 3RC Foundation (Rooney Road Recycling Center) hosts an E-Waste collection event at the City of Lakewood’s Earth Day Celebration. Fees apply. The next Earth Day Celebration is scheduled for April 27, 2019.
- Lakewood Cleanup Day: The City of Lakewood hosts this event in the fall. In addition to electronics, the city also accepts the large, bulky, hard to dispose items.
If you are unable to attend one of these annual events, you also have the following options:
- Staples: Staples recycles your old, unwanted technology at no cost to you — any brand, any condition, even if you purchased it somewhere else. Click here for a list of accepted items.
- Best Buy: In addition to recycling household electronics, Best Buy also accepts appliances (restrictions apply). Many items are recycled for free, but larger items like televisions and appliances are assessed fees. Learn more about accepted items and fees here.
- Rooney Road Recycling Center: For $1.25 a pound, the Center will properly dispose of your electronics and ensure secure erasing of hard drive data. Large televisions will be recycled for a $100 maximum charge.
For additional consideration:
As Black Friday approaches, many of us are gearing up to buy the latest gadgets and update our technology. Before you make those holiday purchases, take a moment to plan ahead and consider what you are going to do with your outdated items. If in working condition, many items can be donated to thrift stores or charities. Retailers such as Staples and Best Buy also have trade in or buy back programs that give your store credit or discounts for your devices.
When in doubt:
E-waste recycling can feel overwhelming at times especially when it pertains to larger items like televisions, computer monitors, and appliances. If you are looking for additional options to recycle these items, be sure to check out the Lakewood Recycling Guide offered online by Zero Waste Services.