Two totally unrelated views of computer recycling

One national and one up close and personal

This morning my colleague Michael Cooney has an interesting post about whether there should be national standards for the recycling of computers and other used electronics.

From that post:

A report issued this week by Congressional watchdogs at the Government Accountability Office stated: "The United States does not have a comprehensive national approach for the reuse and recycling of used electronics, and previous efforts to establish a national approach have been unsuccessful...Broad agreement exists among key stakeholders that reusing and recycling electronics in an environmentally sound manner has substantial advantages over disposing of them in landfills or exporting them to developing countries in a manner that threatens human health and the environment."

Broad agreement, however, does not translate easily into a solution and I'm guessing that any attempt to legislate a national policy on this matter will face daunting odds in the current political climate.

Which leads us to my drive home yesterday ... really.

Traffic was backed up on the Massachusetts Turnpike for miles; the kind of backup that screams "accident scene ahead" even before the roadside neon sign tells you that there is an accident scene ahead. In this case a tractor-trailer had tipped over right at Exit 11A, otherwise known as my exit.

The truck was carrying - wait for it - used computer equipment, presumably headed for a recycling center.

You can see an aerial photo of the accident scene here.

No one was hurt but what the picture doesn't show is the Turnpike toll booth a very short distance from where the teetering behemoth came to rest.  A very short distance.

In other words, computer recycling must be every toll takers worst nightmare.

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