E-waste management charity recycles 100,000th computer

2 Jul 2014

Children from Bondeni Primary School in Mombasa, Kenya, use recycled computers. Photo by Tim Mansel

Camara Education, a charity group responsible for e-waste management and recycling, has marked the receipt of its 100,000th computer with a new survey showing Ireland is the most educated when it comes to e-waste.

Since 2005, the group has erased the hard drives of 116,989 computers and shipped 54,395 refurbished computers to disadvantaged communities in 10 different countries in a bid to improve the quality of education.

According to its figures, in last year alone, Camara accepted more than 176 tonnes of waste, with 74 tonnes of IT equipment prepared for reuse in schools and other educational institutes around the world.

The charity accepts donations of IT equipment from organisations and individuals. Once the computer’s data is securely erased, the machine is evaluated for reuse. If the equipment is not deemed to be suitable for reuse, it is sent to The Recycling Village, Camara’s local accredited recycling partner.

The European study published online, Attitudes of Europeans Towards Waste Management and Resource Efficiency, suggests that in Ireland, 83pc of survey respondents would recycle e-waste.

John Fitzsimons, CEO of Camara Education, said energy is a finite resource.

“Reusing computing equipment is an excellent way to mitigate the negative environmental impact that is generated over the life cycle of a computer. Premature recycling results in the vast majority of resources that have gone into manufacturing being lost.”

Colm Gorey was a senior journalist with Silicon Republic