NewsBits

NewsBits

Oct. 17, 2013

The City of Houston is in the process of adding dozens of e-scrap drop-off sites as part of a partnership with e-scrap processor CompuCycle. Last year the city's program collected 660 tons of e-scrap at its three drop-off locations, and the goal is to now significantly up that volume.

An entrepreneur in the West African nation of Togo has created a 3D printer made entirely from electronic scrap found in junk yards. The man behind the product, which sells for just $100, hopes to help turn sections of Africa into hubs of tech innovation.

IT asset management firm Spruce IT has gained e-Stewards Enterprise certification, joining Wells Fargo, Capital One, the City of Seattle and other entities that have picked up the designation after demonstrating commitments to responsible electronics recycling. Spruce IT offers an IT Asset Lifecycle Optimization suite that fosters product re-use.

As part of a recently released strategy to double household recycling efforts in the next decade, Denmark laid out some ambitious e-scrap collection goals. The nation wants its household end-of-life electronics recovery rate to hit 75 percent.

The global collection sector of the e-scrap industry is slated to enjoy a compound annual growth rate of more than 14 percent through 2016, according to market analysis firm Technavio. The lead factor in that expansion: government policies mandating e-scrap diversion from the waste stream.

A recent study found the average lifespan of a mobile phone in India is six to eight years, significantly longer than in Western nations (where the devices only hit the 22-month mark on average). An informal "gray" market for used products is entrenched in India's economy, and the lifespan study's authors said that as India institutes more formal e-scrap policies, leaders would be wise to integrate the secondary market that already exists, instead of trying to stamp it out altogether.

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