NewsBits

NewsBits

July 31, 2014

Despite a flurry of recent closures in the U.S., Canada and the U.K., Sims Recycling Solutions, the e-scrap recycling wing of publicly traded Sims Metal Management, appears to be standing pat. In a July 23 presentation, Sims' CEO Galdino Claro stressed that "no significant additional restructuring activities or charges are anticipated in the Sims Recycling Solutions business after FY14," a press release reads.

"But what happens when those devices go into disrepair — or worse, obsolescence — and their sleeker, faster successors go on sale, as part of the relentless cycle common among most major hardware companies?," Jenna Wortham asks in a New York Times article entitled, "Smart Garbage." The answer to that question, Wortham finds, is not entirely clear, while the rising tide of e-scrap, often in the form of not-so-old devices, continues to mount.

Urban mining start-up BlueOak has apparently opted to use plasma to recover precious metals from end-of-life electronics. While a request for an interview has not been returned as of press time, the unconventional move has at least one e-scrap precedent in the U.S.: Recovered Energy, an Idaho-based corporation, announced earlier this year it would process CRT glass with plasma arc technology.

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