The UK is on its way to becoming the largest e-waste producer in Europe

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If nothing is done, the United Kingdom will become the largest producer of electronic waste in Europe in the next three years and replace Norway in the infamous first place, warns the research conducted by the company Spring.

According to the company dedicated to the reuse of electronic devices, the United Kingdom produced 1.6 million tons of e-waste in 2019, which is 23.9 kilograms per person. It is estimated that by 2024, the amount of waste will increase to 24.5 kg per person, while in Norway it will decrease to 23.9 kg. By the way, in the world in 2019, a record amount of electronic waste was recorded – 53.6 million tons.

According to the research, 40 percent of waste is illegally exported to other countries where it is dumped. Thus, pollutants from the discarded devices enter the water and the food chain of local communities.

Precious metals from electronic equipment end up in landfills. The estimated value of the thrown materials is 370 million pounds in Great Britain alone. Many of these materials could disappear by the end of the century, which is a problem because they are used in important technologies, such as making solar panels, wind turbines, pacemakers, artificial hips.

Old phones collect dust in the drawer

Spring points out that only 2.5 to 10 percent of electronic devices in the UK are currently being reused. That is why this company, which is committed to repairing and reusing the device, recently started a pilot program in cooperation with the Co-op supermarket.

Kiosks have been set up at 20 locations in supermarkets, where customers can bring their old devices, including phones, tablets, and smart watches. The devices are then repaired and reused or recycled. Spring plans to open 250 new kiosks over the next year with the goal of having 100,000 devices in circulation annually.

Spring co-founder James Seear says the way we consume technology needs to change.

“People don’t realize that when they leave a device in a drawer, it’s as bad as throwing it in the trash. Instead of being used by someone else, the device is out of use and must be replaced with a new one. As technology grows in our homes, so does the mountain of e-waste, which has a catastrophic impact on the environment, ā€¯warns Seear.

His partner Tom Williams believes the key to a sustainable lifestyle is a circular economy.

“The first step is to return the devices we don’t use to the world, to bring them from the state of the previously loved one to the phase of falling in love with them again. The average household has 20 old, unused devices “, why not bring them to our local kiosk, get some money for them and help the environment along the way?

Source: Center for the Promotion of the Circular Economy

Source: Energetski portal Srbije by

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