Language Selection

English French German Italian Portuguese Spanish

Activists push to recycle 'e-waste'

Filed under
Sci/Tech

When Earth Day dawned in 1970, optimistic environmentalists predicted emerging technologies would help reduce the nation's reliance on coal, oil, insecticides and other pollutants.

But 35 years later, a big part of the problem appears to be technology itself.

Tons of computers, monitors, televisions and other electronic gizmos that contain hazardous chemicals, or "e-waste," may be poisoning people and ground water. Activists say the nation's biggest environmental problem may be the smallest devices, and this week they're launching campaigns to increase awareness about recycling cell phones, music players, handheld gaming consoles and other electronics.

Frequently, smaller portable gadgets have batteries that are prohibitively expensive to replace. So consumers in affluent countries simply toss them in the trash.

Environmentalists are particularly bothered by the recycling and reuse policies of cell phone manufacturers and distributors and of Apple Computer Inc., maker of the iPod digital music player.

U.S. consumers retire or replace roughly 133,000 personal computers per day, according to research firm Gartner Inc. According to a study commissioned by San Jose-based Silicon Valley Toxics Coalition, roughly half of all U.S. households have working but unused consumer electronics products.

CEO Steve Jobs and Apple board members, including former Vice President Al Gore Jr., have each received at least 400 faxes about the company's contribution to e-waste, said Robin Schneider, executive director of the Austin, Texas-based Texas Campaign for the Environment. The group is asking Apple to reduce or eliminate recycling fees for consumers and build in-store recycling centers.

In January, Apple agreed to help sponsor an industry initiative launched by eBay Inc. and Intel Corp., that created an informational Web site to help motivate Americans to resell, donate or recycle used gadgets. Gateway Inc., Hewlett-Packard Co., International Business Machines Corp. and Ingram Micro Inc. are also participating, as well as the U.S. Postal Service, which in some cases will help deliver PCs to eBay drop-off locations or recycling centers.

"We'd like nothing better for Earth Day than for Steve Jobs to say he's agreed to producer takeback recycling," Schneider said.

Full AP Article.

More in Tux Machines

Critical Live Boot Bug Fixed and Ubuntu 18.04 is Finally Released

A critical bug in live boot session delayed Ubuntu 18.04 LTS release for several hours. The bug has been fixed and the ISO are available to download. Read more

Nintendo Switch hack + Dolphin Emulator could bring GameCube and Wii game support

This week security researchers released details about a vulnerability affecting NVIDIA Tegra X1 processors that makes it possible to bypass secure boot and run unverified code on some devices… including every Nintendo Switch game console that’s shipped to date. Among other things, this opens the door for running modified versions of Nintendo’s firmware, or alternate operating systems such as a GNU/Linux distribution. And if you can run Linux… you can also run Linux applications. Now it looks like one of those applications could be the Dolphin emulator, which lets you play Nintendo GameCube and Wii games on a computer or other supported devices. Read more

Openwashing Leftovers

Linux Foundation: New Members, Cloud Foundry, and Embedded Linux Conference + OpenIoT Summit

  • 41 Organizations Join The Linux Foundation to Support Open Source Communities With Infrastructure and Resources
    The Linux Foundation, the nonprofit organization enabling mass innovation through open source, announced the addition of 28 Silver members and 13 Associate members. Linux Foundation members help support development of the shared technology resources, while accelerating their own innovation through open source leadership and participation. Linux Foundation member contributions help provide the infrastructure and resources that enable the world's largest open collaboration communities.
  • Cloud Foundry for Developers: Architecture
    Back in the olden days, provisioning and managing IT stacks was complex, time-consuming, and error-prone. Getting the resources to do your job could take weeks or months. Infrastructure-as-a-Service (IaaS) was the first major step in automating IT stacks, and introduced the self-service provisioning and configuration model. VMware and Amazon were among the largest early developers and service providers. Platform-as-a-Service (PaaS) adds the layer to IaaS that provides application development and management. Cloud Foundry is for building Platform as a Service (PaaS) projects, which bundle servers, networks, storage, operating systems, middleware, databases, and development tools into scalable, centrally-managed hardware and software stacks. That is a lot of work to do manually, so it takes a lot of software to automate it.
  • Jonathan Corbet on Linux Kernel Contributions, Community, and Core Needs
    At the recent Embedded Linux Conference + OpenIoT Summit, I sat down with Jonathan Corbet, the founder and editor-in-chief of LWN to discuss a wide range of topics, including the annual Linux kernel report. The annual Linux Kernel Development Report, released by The Linux Foundation is the evolution of work Corbet and Greg Kroah-Hartman had been doing independently for years. The goal of the report is to document various facets of kernel development, such as who is doing the work, what is the pace of the work, and which companies are supporting the work.