Sustainability Spotlight: 400+ lbs. of E-Waste Diverted at CSE E-Cycle Event

Have you ever considered what impacts your electronics have on the environment after they stop working or become obsolete? Not many people do, but in short, it’s quite large.  In 2010 alone, Americans generated about 384 million units of e-waste such as computers, televisions and cellphones, but only 19% of that was recycled. E-cycling, the reuse and recycling of electronic equipment, conserves natural resources such as copper and gold that require a tremendous amount of energy to mine and process while also keeping toxins such as lead, out of our landfills and groundwater.

Employees at the Center for Sustainable Energy in San Diego hosted a successful e-cycle event to rid their junk closets and garages of things like broken laptops, used batteries, burnt out light bulbs, televisions, monitors and other electronics containing heavy metals and caustic materials. They collected and recycled about 365 pounds of e-waste with an additional 35-40 pounds collected at CSE offices in Boston, Oakland and Los Angeles. In all, more than 400 pounds of e-waste was diverted from landfills and taken to a local electronics recycling center. 

Inspired? Become an E-Cycler

Some stores will accept small amounts of used electronics such as batteries, lightbulbs and cellphones and may even recycle larger appliances, such as refrigerators and stoves for free (with the purchase and delivery of a new one). Find your nearest e-cycling center, at

If everyone e-cycled one item per year, we could prevent over 83% of e-waste from ending up in a landfill.

The “Most Memorable E-Cycler” award went to Mr. Josh Erwin, marketing associate, for bringing in his previous 6 iPhones dating back to the days of the iPhone 2G.
A Waste-Free Tip: You can reduce the amount of electronic waste you produce by purchasing rechargeable batteries, LED lights and other advanced electronics that might cost a few dollars more but have greater economic and environmental benefits.
About Christopher Vogel

Energy Engineer
Christopher supplies technical expertise for sustainable energy programs, advises on energy projects and conducts feasibility studies and on-site evaluations.