Over the last few decades the life span of electronics has drastically reduced.Computers in 1996 had an average life span of around six years, today they have a lifespan of about two years. Phones have an even shorter period considering the number of Smartphone manufacturers who are always competing to produce the next best phone.
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All that this leads to is massive amounts of electronic waste. Without proper management, electronic waste can lead to serious environmental damage. This paper will discuss various ways, in which your institution can manage its electronic wastes. (U.N.E.P)
One of the most effective ways of reducing the electronic waste in your school is to avoid buying electronics that you do not need. The consumer culture that has gripped the whole world does not only affect individuals, institutions are also guilty of purchasing electronics that they do not need. By ensuring only the essential things are bought, you reduce the amount of waste generated (Hieronymi, Kahhat, & Williams, 2012).
Once your school has upgraded to more advanced devices you may consider donating or selling the electronics that you will not be using. This will reduce the amount of electronic waste that you have to handle. Websites such as craigslist and eBay are good for selling used electronics.
If this is not an option, you can also take the electronics back to the store where you purchased them. More and more companies are investing in buyback programs to help them acquire materials that can be reused. Before the school purchases any new electronics make sure that you find out whether the store selling them has a buyback program. This will save you a lot of time and money in future (City-of-Melborne).
If the school requires heavy-duty machines, like servers, then you should consider using cloud computing services. This will mean all your storage and processing will be done online, therefore, eliminating the need to buy more electronics (USCC, 2010).
After exhausting all of these methods, the school can look at recycling the electronic waste that is left. Ensure that the electronic waste is not mixed with any other type of waste such as organic waste. Keep the waste in separate containers and transport it to your local electronic waste recycling plant.
City-of-Melborne. (n.d.). Electronic waste recycling. Web.
Hieronymi, K., Kahhat, R., & Williams, E. (2012). E-waste Management. London: Routledge.
U.N.E.P. (n.d.). E-Waste Management. Web.
USCC. (2010). Keeping Organics Out Of Landfills. US Composite Coucil Position Statement , 1-4.