There’s a looming global trash crisis that keeps mounting every year. While most people know how to recycle items like plastic, paper and glass, one-third of Americans don’t know how to dispose of old electronics (e-waste). Less than half know they can take unwanted devices to a store for recycling. As a result, countless broken and outdated devices end up in landfills every year.
Consumers contribute to the crisis, but they’re certainly not the most significant participants. In 2019, e-waste reached a record high of 53.6 million metric tons with substantial help from retailers who toss away billions of returned devices every year. Retailers can play a critical role in helping reduce global e-waste by making returns more sustainable and recycling more accessible.