You’ve Got 1,000 Pounds at Home and You Don’t Even Know It!
A statistical family in the United Kingdom keeps unused electronic equipment worth 1,000 pounds. The equipment can be broken, worn-out or just old and forgotten. Few people know that it can still be used and even generate profit.
There are tonnes of old, used electronic equipment lying around in British flats, houses and workplaces. Every year, UK citizens throw away nearly half a million tonnes of electronic waste, mostly including IT and communication devices, electronic toys, and home electronics. Few people realise that throwing them in the dustbin poses a serious threat to the environment. The situation gets even worse when we consider the fact that electronic devices become obsolete sooner and sooner: the average lifetime of a computer or a mobile phone today is only 2 years.
When getting rid of devices lingering at home we should remember that throwing away electronic waste in the dustbin is a bad idea not only for environmental but also financial reasons. So what should you do with the equipment you no longer need?
If the equipment you want to get rid of is in good technical condition, try to sell it on the Internet or by placing an advertisement in a local newspaper. Take part in a garage sale or sell it to a mobile company that buys used electronics. In fact, as much as a half of all devices thrown away are in working order or can be quickly and easily repaired, so you won’t have any problems finding someone who will be glad to buy them from you.
Give It Away
If you can’t sell the equipment you don’t need, you can always give it away. There’s a number of websites that promote cashless exchange of goods locally. In order to quickly find someone who might want your device, use the support of the Freecycle network. Thanks to it you’ll surely find someone who will use your old equipment for a long time.
Leave It in the Store Where You Buy New Equipment
According to the Waste Electronic and Electrical Equipment (WEEE) Regulations we have the right to leave the equipment we no longer use in the store where we buy new equipment. However, the equipment the store takes needs to be of the same type as the one purchased, which means that when we buy a laptop we can only leave a laptop in the store. Based on the WEEE Regulations, retailers are obliged to take such equipment or provide us with information where it can be recycled free of charge.
Did you know that every year as many as 10 million household appliances are dumped in landfill sites? 3 million of them should be used for the production of new devices. This all comes down to recycling, which allows to reduce the amount of waste and protect the environment. Using the online map of the Furniture Reuse Network, you can find your local recycling centre. Thanks to this, your old computer or telly will be used for the production of a new device, benefiting the environment!
Give It to Those in Need
There is one more thing you can do with the electronics you no longer need: support charity organisations. All you have to do is find information about local organisations that take electrical devices and then give it to those in need. There are many organisations that send the equipment collected to the developing countries as part of such campaigns as “Tools with a Mission”.
Regardless of the solution you choose, you can be sure that your decision will be right, mature and sensible. Let’s not forget that all electronic devices contain dangerous substances, such as mercury, bromine compounds, cadmium, Freon, and asbestos, which are hazardous to health, life and the environment. This is why it’s not worth keeping unnecessary equipment at home, and under no circumstances should you dump it illegally.