Every time our certified technicians complete a Macbook repair or replace a smartphone screen, we’re giving the device a new lease on life and helping to reduce e-waste as a result. Sadly, when it comes to digital devices, a lot of people would prefer to replace rather than repair. As such, electronic waste disposal is the fastest-growing waste stream in the world with no sign of slowing down. The Global E-waste Monitor 2020, a report produced in partnership with the United Nations Environment Program, revealed that 53.6 million metric tonnes of electronic waste were generated globally in 2019. In New Zealand, it is calculated that we generate about 80,000 tonnes of e-waste each year last year.
The raw materials contained in that 53 million tonnes of global e-waste has a value of USD$57 billion in value. This includes precious metals like gold, silver, copper, and platinum, as well as other high-value materials. Another study we’ve read says that electric and electronic equipment contains up to 69 elements from the periodic table, and while it can be costly to recycle them, it could be an important source of secondary materials in a circular economy.
When you see figures like that, you get a better idea of the enormous scale of electronic waste disposal happening in New Zealand and around the world. You might also get an inkling that not all of the materials in discarded devices are precious. Some are highly toxic and are extremely harmful to the environment when they are disposed of straight into landfill.
It doesn’t have to be this way. A lot of the devices being sent to landfill still have years left in them. As we said earlier, we live in a society where people prefer to replace rather than repair. Yet service work carried out by experienced and skilled technicians, like the ones on our team, can extend the lifespan of a laptop, PC or smartphone – repair by repair, we can do our bit to reduce e-waste disposal.
There will always be those who regularly replace devices just to keep up with the latest trends and to boast they have the newest product on the market. But it would be great if more people gave their device one more chance and explored repair options. If that sounds like you, contact us, and we’ll get you out of that “instant disposal” mentality and do our best to help you hold on to what you have, newly repaired and restored to life. It might seem like the tiniest drop in the enormous e-waste disposal bucket, but we have to start somewhere.