KNOXVILLE—Upgrading to a new phone, but not sure what to do with your old one? Since early February, the University of Tennessee, Knoxville, has been collecting people’s personal electronic devices to be recycled.
UT Recycling is accepting cell phones, small batteries, laptop batteries, personal printer and toner cartridges, calculators, MP3 players, CDs and DVDs, power cords, and accessory cases.
Departments with large, university-owned, recyclable e-waste equipment should continue to contact surplus to schedule pickup.
Personal e-waste items are being collected in specially marked collection bins at five campus locations: in the second-floor Commons area of John C. Hodges Library, outside the Bookstore Technology Center in the Carolyn P. Brown University Center, and in the lobbies of Laurel Apartments, the Apartment Residence Hall, and Volunteer Hall.
The collection bins are repurposed filing cabinets from UT’s surplus.
Not all devices collected will be recycled, however. Calculators will be donated to Calculators To Classrooms, a local non-profit organization dedicated to providing essential educational items to Knoxville-area children in need.
“Electronic waste is the fastest growing hazardous waste in the country,” said Emmy Waldhart, AmeriCorps volunteer with UT Recycling. “Finding the best practices for managing it is increasingly important for protecting the environment and user privacy.”
To address the issue, Waldhart found Redemtech, an E-Steward Certified global leader in Information Technology Asset Disposition, which ensures zero export, landfill, incineration, and prison labor handling of e-waste.
Arrangements with the company to manage UT’s e-waste are being finalized.
“We want the campus community to know this program is now available and that we’ve taken every step necessary to ensure the process is trustworthy and secure,” said Waldhart.
Personal electronic devices have joined a long list of recyclable materials at UT that includes paper, plastic, cans, cardboard, wood pallets, light bulbs, and food for composting. For a comprehensive list of recyclable items, visit www.recycle.utk.edu. For departments with large e-waste items to recycle, contact surplus at 974-4959 for pickup. For more information on Redemtech, visit www.redemtech.com.
C O N T A C T:
Emmy Waldhart (865.974.3480, firstname.lastname@example.org)
Jay Price (865.974.3480, email@example.com)