E-waste in Australia
Australians bought 2.4 million new computers last year, sending 1.6 million old computers to landfill (and putting 800,000 into storage – alongside the 5.3 million already there).
As this hardware breaks down over time, dangerous toxins leach into the groundwater, contaminating soil, waterways and ultimately our children.
A standard sized cathode ray tube (CRT) monitor, for example, contains more than two kilos of lead. The toxicity of lead has been well known for centuries, with children particularly susceptible to its effects.
Other toxins contained in PC components include mercury, phosphor, barium, cadmium, hexavalent chromium, beryllium and bromated flame retardants.
Electronic components also contain valuable raw materials, such as copper, iron, silicon, nickel and gold, which are being needlessly squandered through careless disposal.
Applying innovative methods of disassembly (no shredding) and carefully managing resulting waste streams, MRI reclaims precious metals for reuse and diverts up to 98% of product, by weight, from landfill.