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Monday, April 16, 2012

[Earth Day Edition] Recycling Electronic Devices

ecoATM at NFM.
Being green is not always the easiest and most convenient thing to do. You have the casual person that recycles: newspapers, aluminum cans, mulches the lawn and other easy to do’s. Then there is the extreme with the alternate fuel car and house with everything in it such as geo-thermal heating systems. When it comes to electronics; computers, mobile devices, televisions and other gadgets, most of us think to just throw them in the trash. That isn't the case anymore.

Recently, I purchased a new iPhone from Nebraska Furniture Mart (NFM), a local mega store, and noticed what looked like a vending machine where you can recycle your old phone. Important to note, I would recommend resetting your phone back to the factory settings before selling any phone. Once I reset my iPhone, I went through the prompts on the Automated eCycling stations' (ecoATM) screen. Questions included: the make, model and space capacity. It was pretty simple steps to go through; however, the last screen I could not get to work. I spoke with a NFM sales representative about using the machine, who informed me that they have to enter their sales ID number; since, it gives you an in-store credit. The NFM rep also needed to determine the condition (if it works). After that, she plugged it into the ecoATM which stated how much the phone is worth and gives you an in-store credit. I had the original 8g iPhone, which was worth about $20. 

There are other places in which you can cash in old mobile devices. Gazelle is a website that will pay you for your old smart phones and other devices. You can go to their website At the site, enter the device information to get a quote; ship the device to Gazelle; and they will send you the funds. Best Buy will take a variety of electronics in which you can receive an in-store credit. I took an old tube monitor to Best Buy. I had to pay $10 because of the tube but received a $10 store credit. These are just a couple of the websites and local vendors that will take used electronics. I have seen a few companies that will charge you a disposal fee but there are many free services, too. Check out the National Center ElectronicsRecycling (NCER) for additional information regarding recycling.

So, before you toss old or broken electronic equipment in the trash remember to recycle and make a difference.

In celebration of the 42nd anniversary of Earth Day population-we™ staffers will celebrate our love for planet earth with green posts the entire month of April! Thanks for reading our third Earth Day post. 
- population-we blog post by Brian Brown 
© 2012 population-we, LLC
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