On the importance of electronics recycling . . .

I’ve always taken old T.V.s to a local electronics recycling drop off spot (big old “boob tube” type T.V.s, I haven’t retired a newer T.V. yet). Even though I’m ignorant to the reasons why electronics recycling is important, big ol’ T.V.s just kinda seem like a hazard to me.

Now I’ve got to get rid of an old broken printer.
It just doesn’t seem hazardous to me like old T.V.s seem. But, as I said, I’m pretty ignorant as to the reasons why electronics should not just be thrown into the trash. So, enlighten me.

Tell me about electronics recycling in general, and let me know whether it’s important or not that I make another trip to the drop off station with this old broken printer.


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I’ll also be getting rid of a toaster oven and a coffee maker later this month. Hazard rating on those?

Gold is used on circuit boards. Mercury you don’t want released in the environment.

Older stuff may have lead in it, too. You’d want that properly disposed of.
Most of that has been phased out for a while, so it depends on how old your old stuff is.

The concern about landfilling electronics is mostly due to heavy metal leaching- primarily Lead, but also Cadmium, Arsenic, Mercury and various organic chemicals in the plastics.

IMHO, most of the potential risk is way overstated, although I think recycling (or, even better, re-use) is preferable due to the finite supply of metals like copper (it’s estimated that 1/3 of the total amount of easily extractible copper is currently in landfills).

My opinion is that liquid contaminates (like oil and paints) are a much bigger environmental risk than electronics.

But… where did it come from??

It’s not going back in the same form it came from.