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Why is Electronic Waste a Problem?

The amount of electronics that wear out, break, or become obsolete are extensive. Some examples include TV’s, computers, printers, cell phones, monitors, and other electronics. Aside from the limited space in landfills, e-waste contains materials that are harmful to the environment.

The hardest type of products to recycle are CRT monitors. Cathode Ray Tubes contain extremely high concentrations of lead and phosphors. CRTs can be found in old cube TVs and cube shaped computer monitors and more.

The Environmental Protection Agency includes CRT monitors in its “hazardous household waste” category. LCD and plasma TVs are also dangerous. While no landfill item is completely harmless to the environment, electronic waste poses a larger threat due to what it is made of.

E-waste can pollute the water table and impact ecosystems and drinking water. All electronics contain numerous hazardous metals and materials that negatively affect ecosystems around the world when they are added to landfills. Arsenic, lead, and polybrominated flame retardants are just a few hazardous materials that are found in electronics.


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