Technology changes in what seems like seconds. So, after you’ve stocked up on new gadgets over Christmas and Boxing Day, what do you do with the old gadgets?
“You can either take it to the dump or leave it in your basement,” said Lethbridge Community Network e-cycle co-ordinator Allan Schneider, who provided a third option — recycle and refurbish them for people who need them by donating them to the annual Lethbridge Community Network Annual E-cycle Drive, Jan. 10-17.
“We did this last Easter and the e-cycle drive raised 25,000 pounds of old technology,” Schneider said, surrounded by a stack of everything from old monitors, laptops and a bucket of old hard drives.
They don’t offer data removal services like wiping the old hard drives, so he encouraged people to remove them on their own. If they don’t know how, he will remove the drives and destroy them.
“I’ll put a nail through each one of them when I have time,” he said.
There are fewer locations for the bins this year, but bigger bins which will be emptied regularly. A Calgary company, Global Electric Electonic Processing (GEEP) pays them a few cents per pound, which resulted in approximately $2,900 coming in for the Lethbridge Community Network.
Bins will be located at Peavy Mart (33 Southgate Blvd. South), Save on Foods West ( 401 Highlands Blvd. West) , Save on Foods north (1112 2nd Ave North), Sobeys Uplands (327 Bluefox Blvd. North), the Lethbridge Public Library downtown and Crossings Public Library on the west side. They can also be dropped off at their office upstairs in the same building as the Round Street Cafe ( #200 427 5th street south)
“ There are fewer locations and more bins this year,” he observed adding he had to empty many of the bins on his own last year.
“ We need volunteers because those bins fill up fast,” he said.
The technology, which can range from rotary phones to televisions and a lot of computers, monitors, cameras, DVD and Blueray players, scanners, printers and cell phones will either be refurbished and sold to people who need them at a reasonable price. He said computers are upgraded to Windows 7 before being sold to other not for profit organizations and individuals who can’t afford new technology.
“We don’t have the funds to give away the computers” he said, noting more obsolete items are sold to GEEP which will dismantle, recycle or refurbish the parts of each of them.
“It all gets used. Every single part,” he said.