Arlington, VA. - Eighty percent of consumers will
purchase new electronics this holiday season, according to the Consumer
Electronics Association (CEA), which is offering tips to help consumers safely
and effectively dispose of unwanted electronics.
* Turn in the Old:
Most major CE manufacturers and many retailers have reliable, nationwide
recycling programs. For instance, Best Buy's Take Back program, available in
all of its U.S.
stores, accepts all electronics, regardless of point of purchase. Also, many
cities and towns have instituted community electronics recycling programs and
events, CEA said.
* Verify your Recycler:
There are several recognized certification programs for e-waste recyclers that
are willing to use safe, market-driven recycling methods that respond to the
needs of consumers, manufacturers and retailers, including the Institute of Scrap
Recycling Industries (ISRI) and the Industry Council for Electronic
Equipment Recycling (ICER), CEA noted. It is also important for consumers
to ask recyclers the process they use to minimize impacts to the environment
and community, and to check for certifications on recyclers' Web sites before
engaging with them.
* Pay It Forward:
In the holiday spirit of giving, donate your unwanted electronics to charity. CollectiveGood collects used cellphones
and donates refurbished phones to underprivileged communities around the globe,
while Close the Gap provides reused and
refurbished computers to various developing countries, CEA said.
* Protect Your Identity:
Recycling devices that store personal information, including computers and
smartphones, can put you at risk for identity theft. However, there are
many services that can help you erase your personal information from these
devices, such as Symantec's Wipe Info in Norton Utilities,
System Works for PCs and Macs, and a free cellphone data eraser tool from ReCellular,
the association said.
* Buy Green: CEA
explained that many electronics are made from recycled, eco-friendly and
biodegradable materials. Before making a purchase, CEA suggested researching
the product to find eco-friendly models. Many manufacturers post product
descriptions online. When it comes to powering a new CE product, consumers can also
minimize unnecessary waste (and get longer-lasting power) by opting for
rechargeable batteries over disposable, whenever possible, CEA said.
For more recycling tips, visit www.mygreenelectronics.org.