United Recycling Offers Electronic Take Back Program
Chicago, IL - Buy a new car, and you can sell your old one for a few bucks, at least. But, when you buy a new computer, chances are your old one has no resale value. Zilch. So, how do you get rid of it?
If it is legal to do so in your area, you can throw it out with the trash. But, sending it to the landfill isn't the friendliest thing to do to our environment. That old computer contains a mix of toxic materials and non-biodegradable metals and plastics.
Now, United Recycling Industries, Inc., in West Chicago, Illinois, offers an "Electronic Take-Back Program." You put your computer in a box, affix a pre-paid shipping label provided by United, and drop it off at any UPS pick-up location. The computer is shipped to United, which recycles it.
Thanks to an agreement between United and the Compaq Computer Corp. in Houston, Texas, everyone who recycles computer equipment through United will be entitled to a discount on the purchase of a Compaq computer.
The program is available for residents and small businesses in Illinois, Wisconsin, Indiana, Missouri, Minnesota, Michigan and Iowa.
A shipping label costs $27.99 per box. This covers the cost of handling and transportation to United's Illinois recycling facility.
United evaluates each computer for reuse. Computers that can be reused are donated to the Computers for Schools Association in Chicago, which donates them to schools, or the People's Resource Center in Wheaton, Illinois, which distributes them to needy families or uses them at its training facilities.
Both organizations are nonprofit. Before the computers are donated, United erases the hard drives.
United recycles each computer that cannot be reused. First, it destroys or erases the hard drive.Then, it dismantles the computer and recycles its components, plastic, glass and circuit boards. Most important, United handles the toxic materials and hazardous components, including lead, mercury and cadmium, according to EPA guidelines. United performs all recycling functions at its plant and does not use subcontractors or middlemen.
The Electronic Take-Back Program includes personal and laptop computers, printers, monitors, keyboards, external modems and facsimile machines. The Compaq discount applies to all of these. The program does not include household appliances.
Founded in 1952, United has been recycling computers since the 1980s, when companies started jettisoning outdated mainframes.
Massachusetts was the first state to make it illegal for individuals to put their old monitors and televisions in a landfill. "Now, several states have pending legislation concerning electronic recycl-ing," says Bob Glavin, United's presi-dent and CEO. "We predict that several states will implement these laws in the next few years."
For more information, call 1-800-270-8220 from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. CST, weekdays, or, visit United's web site, www.unitedrecycling.com.