Why it is important to recycle your old IT equipment

Recycling has been at the top of the agenda for many people over the last few years.  But what is the benefit and why is it so important?  In a nutshell, recycling helps to protect the environment because it saves energy and reduces greenhouse gas emissions which helps to tackle climate change (another hot topic for a different blog post!).

Using recycled materials in the manufacturing process uses considerably less energy than that required for producing new products from raw materials.  Recycling also reduces landfill, recyclable materials are reprocessed into new products, and as a result the amount of rubbish sent to landfill sites decreases which reduces emissions of methane, a powerful greenhouse gas.

So, what about when it comes to disposing of and recycling old IT equipment?  What is best practice to protect the environment?  Businesses should dispose of their old IT equipment in an environmentally responsible way and here are our top tips:

  1. Prevent Toxic Waste
    IT equipment contains chemicals such as lead, mercury, beryllium and cadmium. When your equipment is recycled, you are preventing the harmful chemical toxins being released into water and the air and reducing environmental pollution.
  2. Reducing Manufacturing Cost & Energy
    Most of your old computer can be recycled and reused.  This includes the glass from your monitor, keyboards, computer/laptop casing, cables, circuit boards, batteries and more.  Reusing the materials from these components means there is less manufacturing required to make the materials again, meaning less cost and minimised energy consumption.
  3. Secured Data Disposal
    The introduction of GDPR means that securing data is governed by law.  Sending your IT equipment to the local recycling centre without following the WEEE guidelines is illegal and can result in hefty fines.  You might think you have deleted the file from your computer, but files are never truly deleted.  You must have your data destroyed by a reputable company.  We can discuss the options with you and arrange it for you.
  4. Donation to Charity
    You might have had to upgrade your IT equipment because it doesn’t meet your requirements anymore, but your device might be perfect for someone who needs it to carry out basic tasks.  There are many people who would benefit from using your old equipment, such as charities, people from disadvantaged backgrounds or schools.  If you recycle your IT equipment by donating it to a worthy cause, you could be helping others who cannot afford to buy new equipment.

There are many things to consider when recycling old IT equipment and Ilkley IT are on hand to help.  We can advise on best practice for dealing with old IT equipment, ensuring all government regulations are followed and that any sensitive data is dealt with in the correct way.  Get in touch with us if you would like to discuss further, we would love to hear from you and help in any way we can, so that together we can play our part in saving the planet.