Journal Star Features Schrock E-Waste Recycling Program

  • Comments: 5
  • Written on: July 20th, 2006

The Journal Star’s feature article today about the new E-Waste recycling program available at Schrock Innovations has generated a surge in demand for computer recycling services.

Last week Schrock Innovations announced a major change to its policies on recycling old and obsolete computers. We are now the only place in Lincoln where businesses and consumers can recycle unlimited e-waste with no disposal fees.

Some people have asked me how Schrock Innovations makes money recycling e-waste when most companies charge a fee to accept it. To dispel the most common suggestions, we do not use the parts from recycled computers to build new computers and we do not “cash in” the scrap metal, gold, silver, or any other element from e-waste with any scrap yard. We do not profit from recycling e-waste – in fact, we actually recycle it at a loss.

To illustrate my point, the average computer has about 2 pounds of metal in it, and it takes about 15 minutes per computer to separate it. Most scrap yards have a minimum threshold of 1 ton of scrap metal to cut a check. A ton is 2000 pounds, so that would be about 1,000 computers. The going rate for scrap metal is about $63 per ton. So for recycling 1000 computers we could make $63, but it would cost us 250 hours of labor. Even at minimum wage, that would amount to nearly $1,300. So as you can see, Schrock is not in this for the money.

So why did we change our recycling policy then? Because it is the right thing to do. Lincoln has given Schrock Innovations so much opportunity, and there was a distinct need in our community for a viable e-waste option. People would rather store old computers than pay to get rid of them, and with the rate of technological obsolescence, stored e-waste is going to become a major problem.

Someone had to get the ball rolling, and our industry is a VERY competitive one. People respect companies that respect the community. If Schrock Innovations begins earning respect for doing the right thing with e-waste, our competitors will have to follow or be left behind. If all of the computer repair companies in Lincoln started recycling e-waste, together we could make a substantial difference in the quality of our ground water and ecology.

If you have old computer-related e-waste around your house, feel free to drop it off at Schrock Innovations in Lincoln or in Omaha. All we ask is that if you are bringing 20 items or more you call 423-9595 to let us know you are coming so we can make transportation arrangements.

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