Recycle and Reuse
Kid Reporter learns how to recycle electronics
|Asset Lifecycle recycles old computers and monitors like these to help save the environment. (Photo: Courtesy Sydney Daniels)|
Everyone knows you can recycle plastic or glass. But did you know you can recycle your computer, too?
Asset Lifecycle is a recycling company in Topeka, Kansas. It specializes in recycling electronics. This involves things like asset disposal—reusing electronic parts—and data destruction. Asset Life also recycles copper, glass, and metal.
Beverly C. Drew is the founder of Asset Lifecycle. Drew has been in the information technology field for 12 years.
“We try to reuse everything we possibly can," Drew said.
In asset disposal, electronics are restored and sent to third-world countries like Afghanistan. This allows poorer countries to have computers and other electronics.
The company also destroys data. This means they use special machines called “hard drive sanitizers” to delete information off of the hard drive of a computer. A hard drive is where all the information on the computer is stored. The company uses a special room to wipe the hard drives clean because most of the information is private.
Large businesses have the most electronic waste Drew told Scholastic News. Monitors are the hardest to recycle. Now everyone wants new flat screen monitors, so refurbishing a monitor doesn’t pay off. No one wants the old kind that are heavy and take up a lot of space.
But Asset Lifecycle tries to help companies recycle all of their equipment, even the stuff that’s hard to find new uses for.
“We try to provide a source for businesses and residential people to discard surplus and [out of date] equipment,” Drew said.
How You Can Help
Kids can help to promote electronic recycling by telling parents not to throw away their old computers. Remind your parents that their electronics may have personal information, such as addresses or tax returns.
Asset Lifecycle also hosts collection events for schools. Kids can bring in old electronics or even cell phones. The company usually donates cell phones to hospitals and shelters.
“The most important aspect of recycling is reuse,” Drew said.
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Sydney Daniels is a member of the Scholastic Kids Press Corps.