18 Oct E-Waste Recycling
E-waste is a growing problem, accounting for 20-50 million metric tons of global waste per year according to the EPA. It is also the fastest growing waste stream in the EU. Many recyclers do not recycle e-waste responsibly. After the cargo barge Khian Sea dumped 14,000 metric tons of toxic ash in Haiti, the Basel Convention was formed to stem the flow of hazardous substances into poorer countries. They created the e-Stewards certification to ensure that recyclers are held to the highest standards for environmental responsibility and to help consumers identify responsible recyclers. This works alongside other prominent legislation, such as the Waste Electrical and Electronic Equipment Directive of the EU the United States National Computer Recycling Act, to prevent poisonous chemicals from entering waterways and the atmosphere.
In the recycling process, television sets, monitors, cell phones and
computers are typically tested for reuse and repaired. If broken, they may be disassembled for parts still having high value if labor is cheap enough. Other e-waste is shredded to pieces roughly 10 centimeters (3.9 in) in size, and manually checked to separate out toxic batteries and capacitors which contain poisonous metals. The remaining pieces are further shredded to 10 millimeters (0.39 in) particles and passed under a magnet to remove ferrous metals. An eddy current ejects non-ferrous metals, which are sorted by density either by a centrifuge or vibrating plates. Precious metals can be dissolved in acid, sorted, and smelted into ingots. The remaining glass and plastic fractions are separated by density and sold to re-processors. Television sets and monitors must be manually disassembled to remove lead from CRTs or the mercury back-light from LCDs
For more information on equipment that will help you process E scrap please call us at 216-252-8090.