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Who does not fancy a new, cool gadget? Especially when we want to keep up with the latest onslaught of technological changes. But, have you ever wondered – what happens to our old gadgets?
Well, we hardly think about it, and this is where innovation and e-waste management come in.
As the issue of waste management took the recycling industry by storm, innovative ideas began surfacing for managing e-waste. Some of these ideas have brought a major change in industry dynamics and given us the potential solution to global e-waste management system.
A few of these significant technological innovations are rounded up here to gauge how much they can further the cause for e-waste management.
Also known as Product Stewardship, WEEE is spearheading sensible e-waste management. Under this method, the government and authorities hold the manufacturers of the electronic and electrical components responsible for managing their end of life products. On a positive note, most companies are voluntarily opting for it under which they own the responsibility of determining efficient recycle and reuse of electrical and electronic components and pass it on to the producers. This is definitely a more sensible solution as the producers are able to recycle separate parts and utilize them to rebuild similar products.
Several U.S companies have developed a kiosk which recycles touchscreen tablets, telephones and MP3 players. After collecting product information, a purchase price is offered to the owners by the kiosk. If the offer is accepted, the owners place their products in the kiosk and take the distributed cash in return. The idea is still under infancy but if adopted on a wider scale, it would provide a substantial room for personally managing e-waste.
Rainforest connection is a project recognized at the Netexplo Forum 2015 This innovation couples recycling with nature conservation. The smartphones that reach the end of their life are connected with the solar panels and placed high up in the tree tops. It enables the phones to detect illegal logging operations within a radius of one kilometer in just five minutes. The testing of this system is still under process in Sumatra for its deployment in Indonesia.
A team of university researchers in Italy has developed a mobile recycling machine which enables small recyclers to extract metals from the previously recycled e-waste. In short, the idea is to make the most of e-waste instead of treating it as a pile of stack! Bottom line? Who is not fond of treasure hunt especially when it’s for a cause as imperative as recycling!
These are merely a few examples of how innovation can rule the e-waste management system. As the world is getting tapped out from the proliferation of electronic and electrical gadgets, innovation can come to our aid showing us new ways to respect our resources.