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Walworth County event to recycle old computers

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Kayla Bunge
April 25, 2008
— Ready to retire that old computer?

Don’t even think about putting it out on the curb.


Computers and other electronics don’t belong in the landfill because they are a source of toxins and carcinogens.


That’s where recycling comes in.


Computer hardware contains many materials—aluminum, iron, tin, silicon and plastic—that can be recovered and reused. Computer components also contain copper, gold and other materials valuable enough to reclaim.


According to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, an estimated 30 million to 40 million computers will be ready for end-of-life management in each of the next few years.


Businesses, municipalities, schools and households can bring old computers to the Walworth County Computer Round-Up on Friday, May 2.


The county has offered a computer collection since 2001, and it’s been a huge success from the beginning, coordinator Janet Cline said.


“We get almost double (the material) each time we do it,” she said. “More and more people are replacing their computers … and they want to get rid of them and do it in an environmentally friendly way.”


To date, the county has collected 237,000 pounds of material from 1,700 participants.


Cascade Asset Management of Madison will process the material collected at the event. Computer components with memory will be wiped clean or shredded so personal data cannot be accessed. Obsolete equipment will be properly recycled, and salvageable material will be refurbished and sold or donated.


The collection event is sponsored by the solid waste division of the Walworth County Public Works Department. Funding for the event is provided in part by the town of Darien Mallard Ridge Landfill Fund.


ROCK COUNTY OPTIONS

Rock County doesn’t have a county-wide computer equipment collection such as the event in Walworth County. But Beloit area residents have an option.


What: Residential Clean-Up Day


When: Saturday, May 3. Drop-off hours are 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. for households only. No businesses.


Where: Beloit Public Works Department, 2351 Springbrook Court, Beloit.


What is accepted: Personal computer equipment, including monitors, keyboards, mice, laptops, printers, scanners, modems and storage drives, cell phones and PDAs. Other electronics and fluorescent bulbs will be collected.


Cost: Monitors, laptops, printers and scanners are $5 each. Fluorescent bulbs are 50 cents each. Keyboards and mice are free. Households can pay by cash or check at the event.


Who can participate: Beloit, Beloit Township and Turtle Township residents.


Information: Bea Lengjak, town of Beloit recycling coordinator, (608) 364-2980 or blengjak.town.beloit@tds.net.


For other county residents: Businesses and other Rock County residents should contact CRT Processing of Janesville at (608) 754-3400.


IF YOU GO

What: Walworth County Computer Round-Up.


When: Friday, May 2. Drop-off hours are 9 to 11:30 a.m. for businesses, manufacturers, municipalities and schools and 1 to 5:30 p.m. for households.


Where: Walworth County Public Works Department, W4097 County NN, Elkhorn.


What is accepted: Personal computer equipment, including monitors, keyboards, mice, laptops, printers, scanners, modems and storage drives, cell phones and PDAs. No other electronics will be collected.


Cost: The first 100 pounds are free. Additional material is 22 cents per pound. Households and small businesses can pay by cash or check at the event. Large businesses, municipalities and schools will be billed.


Who can participate: Walworth County residents. Drivers license is required for proof of residency.


Information: Janet Cline, (262) 741-3367 or jcline@co.walworth.wi.us.



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