Recycling that 8-track to save the environment

By: Jason Tighe
By: Jason Tighe

Knoxville (WVLT) – On Saturday, hundreds of people staged an area-wide effort to keep their aging and antiquated electronic devices from becoming environmental hazards.

Everything from obsolete PC’s to stereo’s that date back to the 1980’s were dropped off during the fourth annual Plug Into Your Community Day at the Best Buy and Staples in West Knoxville.

For hours, the traffic congestion around the drop off site rivaled the holiday shopping problems of just a month ago.

“We’ve been waiting in line for more than an hour and a half,” said one would-be recycler.

But the shopping center on Town & Country Drives auto clog-up was all to promote a more environmentally friendly tone for the region.

When all was said and done, more than 62 tons of wires, plastic housings and metal pieces were piled up, to be discarded in the proper fashion.

"It's really amazing,” said Brian Osgood, from Plug Into Your Community. “If you take what we see here and you take it across every community across the country, it's unbelievable how much stuff is just out there."

The city's solid waste specialists and their partners found the response overwhelming, all five tractor trailer's worth.

The experts say kicking the electrical junk to the curb may be easy, but making the extra effort shows true caring.

“If you think about it, there is almost four pounds of lead for a monitor or a TV,” said Osgood. “Every monitor that we bring in keeps that out of the local landfills and we have mercury and a lot of bad chemicals that can get into our landfills and in our drinking water and so forth."

Through out the afternoon, the line of folks show how conscious they were of keeping the precious environment green.

"The hazardous components within the equipment itself and mainly the circuit boards, which have a lot of lead sorting and other chemical compounds come from the landfill and leaches out," said Joe Williams who was dropping off some equipment.

If you missed Saturday’s drop-off, you can take your old equipment to the solid waste transfer station on West Baxter Avenue.

For more info, call (865) 215-2872

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