Greater demand for electronics recycling and disposal overall

From discarded TVs and mobile phones to cameras and kitchen appliances, electronic waste is the fastest growing waste stream on the planet. By 2030, e waste is expected to generate over 74 million metric tons of waste

With an ever-increasing reliance on and demand for electronics and an excess of e waste, the market for e waste recycling and disposal will continue to explode in 2023. The global e waste market is expected to expand over 14 percent over the next few years to a projected 140 billion by 2028. Europe leads the pack with a share of about 30% of the ITAD market, followed by China and North America. 

Mining old electronics to power new technology

In 2023, bolstered by governmental initiatives and public support for ethically sourced metals, we will likely see even more companies step up efforts to extract precious metals from e waste to power new devices. Unbeknownst to many, e waste from electronic devices such as computers, phones and modems may contain gold, copper, silver and palladium that can be reused in new electronics (or other products). 

China and the EU have made great strides to support a circular economy for their e waste, including efficiently extracting precious metals from old electronics that could reduce dependency on traditional mining. In September 2022, the U.S. joined in the efforts by passing a bill to support electric vehicle battery recycling. We can only speculate that political support will continue to expand for companies considering sustainable e mining as a source for metals.

Reimagining a more sustainable consumer pipeline

The past year saw increasing inflation, greater costs to ship and produce, and an energy crisis to boot. In response to these global economic changes, many savvy business leaders are thinking critically about how to use the supply chain process itself to combat rising prices and save costs. 

In the near future, companies will be taking an even closer look at sustainable ways to improve efficiencies and recover value through both the forward supply chain (producing new materials and distributing to customers) and the reverse supply chain (collecting used products from consumers and reprocessing them). Electronics recycling will be an important aspect of supporting and streamlining the reverse supply chain component for retailers.

Refurbished electronics gaining popularity

Sales of refurbished electronics grew leaps and bounds during the pandemic after the world faced an electronics shortage, supply chain issues and greater demand for home electronics. This recycling trend continues to be a solid one, with an increase in online marketplaces and market share for certified used electronics. As electronics refurbishment processes have improved, so has public trust in purchasing used electronic equipment. 

Additionally, the right to repair movement gained big momentum in 2022 with Apple and Microsoft providing replacement parts and repair manuals to enable independent repair of devices. This move, made by two of the largest electronic retailers, will make it that much easier for electronics experts to refurbish and repair broken electronics, and save a significant amount of e waste from going straight to the landfill. 

With the increasing need to create a circular supply chain and recover costs—while also safeguarding against data recovery—it will be more important in 2023 than ever to partner with a certified electronics recycler well versed in the latest trends and data destruction techniques. Contact Global Electronic Recycling to learn more about how we can partner with you in the new year for your electronics recycling needs.  

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