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Residents drop off e-waste at Hilltop Mall

on October 16, 2014

Thanks to an electronic waste recycling service, electronic gadgets that have reached the end of their lives will no longer end up in a landfill.

Richmond residents came to drop off their end-of-life or unwanted electronics for free recycling last Saturday at Hilltop Mall.

The unwanted electronics will be sent to a de-manufacturing line, according to Martin Sarkis, a staff member at BlueStar Electronics, which co-hosted the event. Computers and other electronic devices will be dismantled and separated into valuable commodities such as plastics, steel, copper, glass and aluminum.

California bans the improper disposal of all electronics. And in 2003, the state introduced an electronic waste recycling fee on all new monitors and televisions sold, to cover the cost of recycling.

Jane C. Reid, the marketing consultant at Hilltop Mall, said there used to be a recycling station in the parking lot near the Mall, which was operated by a non-profit organization, but it has moved away.

“This is the first time for us to launch this kind of event,” Reid said. “We are planning to do this twice a year in the future.”

Every year hazardous electronic waste are shipped for disposal to third world countries, putting workers there and the environment at risk.

The electronic recycling program aims to properly recycle electronics for their secondary materials while keeping toxic materials out of landfills, said Reid.

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Richmond Confidential is an online news service produced by the UC Berkeley Graduate School of Journalism for, and about, the people of Richmond, California. Our goal is to produce professional and engaging journalism that is useful for the citizens of the city.

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