Impact of Technology on Health and the Environment Case Study
There are a lot of different things that impact our health and the environment, and computers and E-Waste are no exception. “E-waste means electronic products nearing the end of their useful life” [ (Electronics, 2013) ]. These items may even be some of the worst offenders due to the hazardous materials they are made of. Some companies are trying to make less hazardous products. For example, “Dell bans the use of some hazardous materials, such as cadmium and mercury; has reduced the amount of lead in several desktop computers; and meets the European Union requirement of being completely lead free for all electronics shipped to the EU” (Morley, 2011, p. 281). Since it is possible to make computers using recyclable products and without some hazardous materials, I do believe a manufacturer is being unethical if they choose not to do this. Community Recycling
I found that my city offers a computer and electronic recycling program. There is a drop off site we can go to or the company will even come to the house to pick up the items. According to Resource Recovery and Recycling Authority of Southwest Oakland County (RRRASOC), once they receive the items, they re-use, refurbish, or recycle them (Electronics, 2013). I believe that responsible use plays an important role in this situation. While some people may believe it is unethical for consumers to buy products that contain hazardous materials, I don’t necessarily believe that. Right now if we want a computer we have to buy what is on the market and what we can afford. In my opinion based on what I have seen regarding other environmentally friendly products, is that these types of products cost more. If a consumer can’t afford it, then they shouldn’t be forced to buy it. But on the other hand, if a consumer chooses to buy a computer, they need to be...