How to Recycle Electronics in Canada
Find out where to recycle items such as MP3 players, computers and more
Canadians send an estimated 272,000 tons of electronic waste to the dump every year. The bad news is that electronics like cellphones, laptops and DVD players often contain toxic chemicals including lead, mercury and cadmium, which can make them particularly hazardous to the environment. The good news? Thanks to electronic waste recycling programs that you can find through retail stores, charities and non-profit organizations, it’s now easier than ever to responsibly dispose of electronics in Canada. Here are some tips to get you started on your quest to live a greener lifestyle:
- The next time you’re in the market for a new toy, give the outdated version back to the retailer. Best Buy and Future Shop offer in-store ”recycling stations” where customers can leave items such as MP3 players, batteries, cellphones and ink cartridges for recycling (Be sure to call or check out the stores’ websites for details on the types of products they accept).
- Apple lets you recycle your old computers and monitors by purchasing a recycling package (including shipping materials) online through their partner, Metech (at a cost of $30 US). Once you receive the package in the mail, you can arrange for Metech to pick up your used hardware.
- Handheld Sony products can be recycled at all Sony Style retail stores. All other Sony products can be recycled at Sony collection centres located across Canada.
- The Charitable Recycling Program will contribute to the charity of your choice for each used cellphone you give them.
- Businesses can support Industry Canada’s Computers for Schools Program, which refurbishes used computers and distributes them to schools across the country.
Recycling resources on the web
- If your cast-offs still have some life left in them, check out listings on craigslist, kijiji or freecycle, where you might be able to sell or donate your used electronics. Tip: Be sure to check out the artists’ communities on craigslist and kijiji where artistic types sometimes request old electronics to use in their projects.
- Arrange for the Electronic Recycling Association to pick up old electronics from your business by filling out an online form.