EMCS students bring recycled electronic trash to forefront

Student-led group is gathering information and hopes to raise public awareness to the issue

Our old phones, TVs, VCRs and old electronics all find their way, one way or another, to the dump.

What if they didn’t? What if they could all be responsibly recycled without tainting Mother Earth?

This is a question Edward Milne Community School student Triston Line and his team are trying to answer by raising awareness; and more to the point, are those claiming to be recycling these products following suit?

“Not exactly,” Line told the Sooke News Mirror, adding that often times “e-waste” continues even through the hands of companies that supposedly recycle all exterior and electronic components of a device.

“They’ll take the plastic out, melt it, take the rest of the stuff out and ship the rest of it to a Third World country as garbage,” he said, adding most of the waste product comes from places such as United States, Canada, Australia and Europe.

Line said the reason for shipping remaining contents out is that it’s cheaper than stripping out each individual raw material from a single electronic.

These wasted materials aren’t necessarily trash either; some include gold and palladium.

Line’s experience with computers goes way back, and has previously worked at an Apple Authorized Repair Facility. From this, he says he can detail some of the day to day events that took place and how the generation of e-waste comes about.

At the end of the day, e-waste ends up poisoning waterbeds, fertile farmlands and leads to lost crops, toxic water and numerous (and sometimes fatal) health-related side effects.

“We can do better than this. It just doesn’t make sense.”

Line said part of the reason e-waste has gone up in the last two years is because electronics are not made to be recycled as much as they used to, but more so to be replaced and discarded.

“Plasma screens have gotten a lot thinner, and glass has dropped in value, while plastic and metal are the norm,” he said, adding that many electronics, such as phones, are very fickle to fix, causing people to retire their devices at an alarming rate.

While Line’s group is still gathering info, their goal is clear: raise awareness.

 

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Rare white orca spotted hunting off shores of Alaska for first time

Tl’uk seems healthy and strong, says researcher

Mental health challenges add to youth stress load

Part 2 in a Black Press series on Youth Homelessness

Langford bike park rolling along to completion

New park a tribute to Jordie Lunn’s legacy

Protesters showcase massive old yellow cedar as Port Renfrew area forest blockade continues

9.5-foot-wide yellow cedar measured by Ancient Forest Alliance campaigners in Fairy Creek watershed

Sooke Bluffs staircase closed due to rot

District to consider replacement for ‘high risk’ staircase in fall

VIDEO: Greater Victoria police officers try bhangra dancing with social media star

Gurdeep Pandher leads bhangra lesson on front lawn of the BC Legislature building

Captain Horvat’s OT marker lifts Canucks to 4-3 win over Blues

Vancouver takes 2-0 lead in best-of-7 NHL playoff series with St. Louis

Widow of slain Red Deer doctor thanks community for support ahead of vigil

Fellow doctors, members of the public will gather for a physically-distanced vigil in central Alberta

Taking dog feces and a jackhammer to neighbourhood dispute costs B.C. man $16,000

‘Pellegrin’s actions were motivated by malice …a vindictive, pointless, dangerous and unlawful act’

Racist stickers at Keremeos pub leaves group uneasy and angry

The ‘OK’ hand gesture is a known hate-symbol

VIDEO: World responds to B.C. girl after pandemic cancels birthday party

Dozens of cards and numerous packages were delivered to six-year-old Charlie Manning

Expected fall peak of COVID-19 in Canada could overwhelm health systems: Tam

National modelling projections released Friday show an expected peak in cases this fall

Hundreds of sea lions to be killed on Columbia River in effort to save endangered fish

Nearly 22,000 comments received during public review were opposed, fewer than 200 were for

Most Read