The growing problem of electronic waste in landfills
According to the Environmental Protection Agency, 42% of electronics sold between 1980 and 2004 have been thrown away, the majority of which were not recycled. From 1999 to 2004, the rate of recycling for these products flattened at just 15% to 20%.
What's worse is that many of these unwanted electronics still work. The Consumer Electronics Association estimated that of the 304 million electronics — including computers, televisions, VCRs, monitors and cell phones — removed from U.S households in 2005, two-thirds were still working.
While the number of electronics recycled has increased in recent years, the percent recycled remains the same when compared to the total amount of electronic waste, which has also increased. Electronic products have become the fastest growing portion of the solid waste stream.