Public invited to dispose of e-waste at annual event


Safely dispose of old, broken or unwanted electronics at the free e-waste recycling event sponsored by the University of Michigan and Ann Arbor Public Schools April 24-26.

The Office of Campus Sustainability, which serves as the focal point for sustainable campus operations, is coordinating the three-day event, which is open to the public, local businesses and non-profits. 

An assortment of electronics will be accepted, including laptop and desktop computers, televisions and telephones.

Collections will occur at Pioneer High School and at the U-M State Street Commuter Parking Lot. Logistics for equipment drop-off are:

• General public: April 26, 9 a.m.-2 p.m., at Pioneer High School, 601 W. Stadium Blvd. Enter from Main Street at the corner of West Stadium 

• Businesses and nonprofits: April 24, 9 a.m.-5 p.m., and April 25, 7 a.m.-3 p.m. at the U-M State Street Commuter Parking Lot, 2694 S. State Street. Pre-registration is encouraged to ensure adequate staffing.

“Each year, thousands of people stop by to take advantage of this environmentally safe manner for disposing electronics,” said Andy Berki, manager of the Office of Campus Sustainability. “It’s exciting to see the community engaged in the proper disposal of their electronics and the effort to keep potentially harmful materials out of the landfills.”

Following collection, equipment is properly disassembled, shredded and recycled into raw materials by a fully licensed recycling facility in North America, and manufactured into new items.

Electronic waste is the fastest-growing type of waste worldwide and frequently contains hazardous materials like lead and mercury, which can adversely affect the environment and human health.

According to data provided through an e-waste initiative led by the United Nations, the United States is the world’s largest generator of electronic waste and created nearly 9.4 million tons in 2012; an average of 65 pounds per person.

Additionally, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency estimates only 25 percent of electronics ready for end-of-life management are collected for recycling.

This is the seventh year the university and Ann Arbor Public Schools have sponsored the event. Since 2008, the event has filled a combined total of 106 semi-trailers, and diverted a total of 1,374 tons of electronic waste from local landfills.

The e-waste event supports the university’s overall commitment to sustainability known as Planet Blue. 


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