Is Computer Recycling Profitable?

The question of profit when it comes to electronic recycling services is a difficult one. First, the environmental value of recycling products is immeasurable. How does a person put a price on the well-being of our planet? Additionally, the economic viability of something like computer recycling depends on ever-changing market factors—particularly the price of oil.

Let’s explain: recycling is the process of converting waste into reusable goods. Thus, recycling can only demonstrate monetary value if the reusable goods generated can create enough revenue to cover the costs of the recycling process. In the case of computer recycling services, some of the core commodities harvested are plastics and other petroleum-based materials. Thus, the recycled products only have value if oil prices are high enough to make creating new petroleum-based materials expensive.

Other Considerations

Not all electronic waste is equal. Low-value items like keyboards, cords, printers, and so on are more prone to diminishing worth when oil prices drop—and, therefore, more likely to end up in a landfill. However, high-value items like laptops, monitors, and smartphones have a good resale value and thus retain more worth. Thus, a computer is more likely to actually go through recycling services rather than get shipped to a landfill.

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