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In 1983 TIME magazine bestowed its coveted person-of-the-year award to the
computer. This invention revolutionized the way we work, play and communicate.

Since then, technology has advanced at an amazing speed, and in order to keep up
we are replacing our old machines at the same rate, creating a cyclical stream
of waste. But this is not your grandmother’s compost. Computers, cell phones, TVs,
and other electronics are filled with heavy metals. A typical CRT computer monitor—
the standard box we’re all familiar with—contains roughly 7 pounds of lead. In
addition to lead, they also contain other toxics: cadmium, mercury and brominated
flame retardants. While perfectly harmless on our desktop, when thrown away these
antiquated electronics are classified as hazardous waste.

The proper disposal of e-waste is an issue of international concern.

  • Seventy percent of America’s e-waste is buried in a landfill—a toxic time
    release positioned in roughly every community in our country.
  • Most of the e-waste collected for recycling in the United States is actually sent to a developing country to be broken down.
  • Recycling metals from e‐waste uses a fraction of the energy needed to mine
    new metals.
  • 81% of a desktop computer’s energy use is in making the computer, not using it.
  • E‐waste is the fastest growing waste stream in the world.
  • 20 to 50 million metric tons of e‐waste is disposed of worldwide each year.
  • The United States is the only industrialized country that does not prohibit the export of its e-waste.

For a clear explanation on this issue, please view The Story of Electronics, produced by Free Range Studios :




For more information on the harms of this blight, please visit the Basel Action Network website, be sure to check out their links page: www.ban.org



produced by:
Jellyfish Smack Productions