Istanbul Getting Old Computers Off the Streets

old computer keyboards in box photo
Photo: Life Smile Project

A country's newfound prosperity can often be a mixed blessing for the environment. When people have more money, they tend to consume more and create more--and different kinds of--trash. Although the percentage of Turkish households with access to a computer is still low--just over 10 percent. according to the latest Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) Factbook--cell phones and satellite dishes are nearly ubiquitous in Istanbul and all kinds of electronic gadgets are readily available. These things, of course, wear out eventually, and can leach all sorts of nasty chemicals into the environment, a particularly problematic possibility in a place where trash is still often dumped in the street.

anti computer dumping billboard in istanbul photo
Photo: Life Smile Project

Earlier this year, though, Istanbul municipality officials announced that they would begin collecting personal computers for recycling. The European Union-funded, city-wide program, dubbed "Life Smile" (Sustainable Management of Istanbul Local E-waste), is expected to gather about 6,000 PCs and peripherals during its 30-month-long first stage.

old computers in warehouse photo
Photo: Life Smile Project

Any still-functioning machines will be refurbished, with their hard drives wiped clean, and made available to public institutions like hospitals and schools, as well as to low-income individuals. A follow-up program will collect "white goods" like dishwashers and washing machines, which are increasingly common in Turkish homes. Via: "Giant recycling project for e-wastes," Turkish Daily News
More about e-waste around the world:
EPA Takes a Lax Approach to E-Waste Monitoring, GAO Report Finds
European E-waste, Labeled 'Second-Hand,' Is Unloaded in Ghana
E-Waste Gets a New Pick-Me-Up in Mumbai
Mexico Struggles to Deal with E-Waste
How to Better Mitigate the Impact of E-Waste
E-waste Recycling is Serious Health Threat in China

Tags: E-Waste | Recycling | Turkey | Waste


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