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The Oncoming Tide of E-Waste

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t.alex
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design for recycling
t.alex   5/8/2014 9:50:54 AM
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Hardly do we see a product that can be easily recycled. Most focus on the aesthetic aspect to make sure people will buy  the products first. 

SP
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Re: design for recycling
SP   5/8/2014 1:37:32 PM
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Yes the tide of E-waste is already on the way. We see children's toys almost all used batteries, there are PCBs inside. The old spike busters, old phones etc. the list goes on and on. The sad part is e-waste recycling is still not being considered a serious business and there is absolutely no colllection mechanism. I have lots of e-waste lying in my home, have been keeping it aside but hardly there are recyclers. And no one wants to come and pick up as its makes no business sense.

t.alex
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Re: design for recycling
t.alex   5/10/2014 9:53:22 AM
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SP, this is pretty good example. Children toys are easily broken thanks to the .. children. They smash they throw and the toys stop working after a while. I have never seen such service of collecting old toys for recycling.

Carole Mars
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Re: design for recycling
Carole Mars   5/11/2014 12:00:45 AM
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Toys is actually a very interesting case - the product safety rules drive design away from recycled content (too much potential for contamination) and easy disassembly so kids aren't the ones taking batteries and other electronics out. There is also the tendancy of people to store or give away toys rather than recycling. British Columbia, Canada, actually does have a successful toy recycling program. The problem is what little is returned is completely broken or usually made of low-grade plastics that have no recycling value. It's a real challenge to figure out how to handle them.

Hailey Lynne McKeefry
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Re: design for recycling
Hailey Lynne McKeefry   5/16/2014 8:19:18 PM
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@Carole, i hope there will be a buyer revolution around toys. WIth my kids, i focused on getting fewer toys, and have those being made out of wood. THe dollhouse was a big favorite and will be passed down to the next generation. it's a hard sell wiht kids sometimes though. We had our share of teh plastic toy of the moment...Little Pet shop animals (plastic but not electronic) come to mind. I want to find the person who came up with the slogan "collect them all" and bury him with plastic toys. :)

Carole Mars
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Re: design for recycling
Carole Mars   5/10/2014 11:54:55 PM
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Actually e-waste is a very serious business in the B-to-B space, but not for consumer products. The materials, boards and chips are low value and labor intensive to recover. Some recyclers have figured out how to do this profitably, mainly through volume, but it's definitely not simple for either the recycler or the consumer. I'm watching the variety of programs that are starting to try and change the idea of "waste" to "resource" or "scrap" to improve recycling. The local effort here is Reimagine Phoenix. E-waste doesn't tend to be on the agenda for these programs, but I think they'll have to deal with this issue, hopefully sooner than later.

Hailey Lynne McKeefry
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Re: design for recycling
Hailey Lynne McKeefry   5/16/2014 8:16:29 PM
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I hope that B2B programs will raise awareness on the part of consumers (employees are consumers too, afterall). Here's a link to the program that Carole mentioned: Reimagine Phoenix. Let us know about other programs in your area... what makes them great?

_hm
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Why do you need air freshener?
_hm   5/10/2014 8:09:04 AM
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Air freshner in itself is polluting environment. Why people needs air freshners? Can there be alternate for that too?

 

garyk
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The On coming Tide of E-Waste
garyk   5/16/2014 8:02:12 PM
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Everyone talke about Toys and Air Freashers. Easy solution, send them back to CHINA.

Hailey Lynne McKeefry
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Re: The On coming Tide of E-Waste
Hailey Lynne McKeefry   5/16/2014 8:19:50 PM
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@garyk, or don't buy them in the first place. :)

Eldredge
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Re: The On coming Tide of E-Waste
Eldredge   5/28/2014 8:34:23 PM
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@Hailey - Probably a better solution, given the track record for contaminated paint ( among other issues). 

 

tfcsd
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The Oncoming Tide of E-Waste
tfcsd   5/18/2014 1:13:48 AM
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If you think E-Waste is a problem; try reusing E-Waste before it is reprocessed (4Rs). In the past one could easily rescue items from a recycling/scrap pile and restore them to their original use or repurpose them (i.e. art) and no one cared. Now, when you try to reuse E-Waste, you get a plethora of sniveling, whimpering, and whining about new rules, regulations, and more (written mainly by insular paper pushers). Worse yet, they ask interfering questions to confirm their misgivings as if being resourceful has become criminal behavior.

Hailey Lynne McKeefry
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Re: The Oncoming Tide of E-Waste
Hailey Lynne McKeefry   5/30/2014 6:03:56 PM
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@tfscsd, what do you think motivates the concerns of these folks? is it "We created rules and now people have to follow them"? or is there some safety/security concern? I wonder if there's a way to find a compromise.

tfcsd
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Re: The Oncoming Tide of E-Waste
tfcsd   5/31/2014 2:55:54 AM
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@ Hailey,

It is much worse than "rules must be followed". It is simplistic rules being made by simplistic people being expedient who may not comprehend all the complex rules of a complex world in the long run. There is a joke: there are two kinds of people in the world; those who think there are two kinds of people in the world and those who don't. Another example is game theory where you have win/lose lose/win games compared to lose/lose win/lose lose/win win/win games. One game has two outcomes while the last game has four outcomes. Now imagine the first person playing the first game (2 outcomes) against the last person playing the last game (4 outcomes). The last person would hopefully want the outcome to be win/win, but the first person (two states) seeing that the last person is winning would naturally think in his two games states that he is in a lose/win state where he is losing. The first person (2 outcomes) would then seek to make the second person lose and thus, by default, be in a win/lose state where the first person "wins". The second person would see his win/win game outcome revert to only being win/lose or worse lose/lose (half of his 4 outcomes) and thus can only lose. The second person would try to convince the first that win/win is best for both, but the first person cannot or won't grasp that forth game state. Now here's the catch, if the world/economy is a four outcome game (or more (i.e. truel: 3 way duel)) then the optimal win/win state is now impossible and most likely could end up lose/lose with the first person still thinking the last person "won" (thus having misgivings until he completely "wins" or the other definitely loses). How does this blather apply to recycling? The new style recycler (under the current e-waste laws, security, insurance, and so on) sees e-waste as making money by only recycling (one R) while others may see e-waste as reduce/reuse/recycle (three Rs) (i.e. German auto recycling). The new style recycler (and lawmakers lurking somewhere in the mix) by "efficiency" and other "rules" have created a straight and narrow lock step path by eliminating multiple solutions they do not want or understand. This mindset difference is played out in greater contrast in third world countries where "modern" big solution recyclers push out the traditional recyclers (i.e. Zabbaleen, rag man, or old-style junk yards who made their living by sorting and reusing when more profitable). Lastly, lower primates and young children who learn to do a task one way in a group, deliberately impede others from doing that same task differently. Hope that answers your question.

Hailey Lynne McKeefry
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Re: The Oncoming Tide of E-Waste
Hailey Lynne McKeefry   5/31/2014 7:35:55 PM
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@tfcsd, thanks for taking the time to answer...and it is very useful. I hope that these kinds of conversations help bring awareness to the situation so that your more sophisticated players (per your game theory example) become more common.

Eldredge
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Unaware
Eldredge   5/28/2014 8:39:32 PM
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@ Carol - You make a valid point. Electronic subassemblies have proliferated into consumer products that we don't think of as 'electronic' devices. We probably throw away several products that we should be recycling.

nimantha.d
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Re: Unaware
nimantha.d   5/28/2014 11:24:37 PM
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@Eldridge: Indeed, we must make sure to identify what items we can recycle and then make the maximum out of those items. 



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