More than 250 million computers in the United States may become obsolete in the next five years, and those machines, along with TVs, computer monitors, VCRs, DVD players, printers, copiers and stereo equipment are overwhelming the nation's landfills. As a result, substances such as lead, mercury, chromium and cadmium are seeping into the environment.
Schaefer Enterprises, Inc. has provided electronics recycling to local residents and businesses since August 2007. SEI is a nonprofit organization that provides services to adults with developmental disabilities in Weld County. The agency runs a sheltered workshop that allows people who would not otherwise be able to work in the community a chance to improve their skills and earn a paycheck. More than 20 people with developmental disabilities earn wages for taking these electronic products apart and separating them into plastics, metal, circuits, wiring and glass.
Residents and businesses can bring their end-of-life electronics to 420 15th Street in Greeley Monday through Friday from 9 AM to 3 PM. Schaefer Enterprises is closed weekends and major holidays. After-hour drop-offs are discouraged. Scheduled pick-ups of electronic waste can be arranged for residents and businesses for a fee.
Schaefer's Recycling and Baling Center will no longer accept televisions or monitors. The costs for Schaefer to continue to be a “pass through” for televisions and monitors is so high that they lose money on a monthly basis. The problem could be solved by charging higher fees, but they believe that is not fair to their customers.
For more information, call 353-0662.