11.0102 environmental questions

Humanist Discussion Group (humanist@kcl.ac.uk)
Fri, 13 Jun 1997 09:47:47 +0100 (BST)

Humanist Discussion Group, Vol. 11, No. 102.
Centre for Computing in the Humanities, King's College London

[1] From: Patricia Galloway <galloway@mdah.state.ms.us> (8)
Subject: Landfilled computers

[2] From: Lorna Hughes <Lorna.Hughes@nyu.edu> (24)
Subject: Re: 11.0098 challenges & other Online matters

Date: Thu, 12 Jun 1997 10:17:59 -0500
From: Patricia Galloway <galloway@mdah.state.ms.us>
Subject: Landfilled computers

In fact, in the US at least there is a very vigorous industry in the
recycling of old computers: every component from the plastic to the
heavy metals on the circuit boards is respectively recycled and/or
reused. I have had to look into this for Mississippi state government
(here, we're so poor that somebody in state government uses them until
they are actually broken), and there are many recyclers in all parts
of the country.

Pat Galloway
MS Dept. of Archives and History

Date: Thu, 12 Jun 1997 12:19:31 -0400 (EDT)
From: Lorna Hughes <Lorna.Hughes@nyu.edu>
Subject: Re: 11.0098 challenges & other Online matters

Another nightmare for environmentalists is the prospect of landfills
overflowing with TV sets after digital television is introduced. We
recently had Joel Brinkley (digital TV trailblazer) from the New York Times
at NYU for a colloquium - he was asked a question about the garbage
problems we'll have when everyone dumps old TVs for new ones at the same
time. Needless to say, the media moguls haven't thought about this one!


>Please, the next time you hear some environmentally naive person talk about
>"saving trees" direct them to this article. "Fifty-five million computers
>will be landfilled in the US by the year 2005, according to a preliminary
>report by Carnegie Mellon University's green design initiative due to be
>published later this month..." Furthermore, "for every four purchases of new
>computers in the US, another three used machines are lying abandoned in
>storage." Redeploying the old kit is problematic for many reasons and will
>not be done, according to Cottrill, until it is required by law.
>"Landfilling is fraught with difficulty because some units pose an
>environmental risk, because they contain toxic elements such as lead."

Lorna M. Hughes E-mail: Lorna.Hughes@NYU.EDU

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