Have you ever wondered: what makes recycling “green”? Does recycling help the environment? And how does this compare to other “green” activities like driving less or planting a tree? In this post, we’ll explore electronic recycling and greenhouse gases (GHG). You’ll learn how recycling stacks up against other green activities in carbon dioxide prevention.
When a business or individual drops off electronic waste at GreenCitizen, it gets recycled by material type. The process of recycling separates and reuses those precious metals found in electronics. This lowers the demand for metal mining and extraction, an environmentally destructive, greenhouse gas-emitting process. When in excess, GHG (carbon dioxide, methane and nitrous oxide) have a negative effect on earth’s climate. They absorb and emit radiant heat, warming the planet in the process. This is why electronic recycling is so important!
The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has calculated the GHG emissions that are prevented when electronics are recycled. In fact, they created a calculator that uses the total weight of electronics recycled to determine the metric tons of mitigated GHG emissions. The chart below is a handy reference to see how much GHG emissions you decrease by recycling with GreenCitizen.
For example, if you recycle 60 pounds of electronics (a heavy TV and some miscellaneous appliances), you prevent 158 pounds of carbon dioxide from entering the atmosphere. In terms of GHG reduced, it’s equal to planting 2 trees or not burning 8 gallons of gasoline!
|Electronics Recycled (lbs)||Greenhouse gas emissions prevented (lbs of CO2e)||Equivalent to the carbon sequestered by __ trees.||Equivalent to carbon emissions from burning __ gallons of gasoline.|
It’s amazing how easy electronic recycling in San Francisco is with GreenCitizen. It’s just one of the many ways you can reduce your carbon footprint.
If you have any questions about recycling and greenhouse gases, give us a call at (650) 493-8700.
Written by Gwen Buckley.