A lot of electronics recycling events are scheduled on and around Earth Day each year. And, if you have old computers, cell phones, or other electronics gear, it is far better to take it to be recycled rather than adding it to the landfill.
But, there are also hardware hackers, robotics enthusiasts, Makers, and others who would like to get those components to use for their creations. Due to privacy and security concerns, donated materials cannot be given to these people. Hard drives and memory cards may have some data on them, but those can be separated, and the useful electronics can find new life in a new creation.
Some groups are now organizing to hold swap events before the big recycling collections to have an opportunity to have some of these materials find new purpose and new life, rather than having them shredded. In Ann Arbor MI, a group called GO-Tech is planning a materials swap like this the day before the annual local electronics recycling event.
If you're a Maker and that's not enough stuff for you, or you aren't near a repurposing event like this, we also recently noted on TreeHugger that the online store Think Geek has a scrapbox subscription program that will send you a box of "borked stuff" that they can't resell or donate, but that enterprising people might be able to make use of.
written by Keith Mc., April 21, 2011
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