The following information can be a valuable resource for school teachers, students, or anyone else interested in environmental issues. This information comes from recycling statistics and surveys of the printer cartridge recycling, cell phone recycling and corporate recycling industries.
PRINTER CARTRIDGE RECYCLING
* In 2005, over 700 million new printer cartridges were sold in the USA. (650 million inkjet cartridges and 70 million toner cartridges)
* In 2005, over 60 million new printer cartridges were sold in Canada. (59 million inkjet cartridges and 7 million toner cartridges)
* In 2005, over 500 million new printer cartridges were sold in Europe. (525 million inkjet cartridges and 49 million toner cartridges)
* In 2005, over 100 million recycled printer cartridges were sold worldwide. (62 million inkjet cartridges and 42 million toner cartridges)
* 2 1/2 ounces of oil are used for each new inkjet cartridge.
* 3 1/2 quarts of oil are used for each new toner cartridge.
* Every toner printer cartridge on average, is made up of about 2 1/2 pounds of plastic, along with rubber, aluminum, and steel.
* About 3 1/2 quarts of petroleum are required to power the manufacturing process that converts oil and natural gas to plastic , to produce a single printer cartridge.
* Every printer cartridge contains petroleum as "embedded energy". It take the energy equivalent of about 1/2 gallon of oil to produce a 2 1/2 pound laser cartridge.
* Each new toner cartridge uses about 3 quarts of oil to produce, and adds 2 1/2 pounds of plastic to the environment.
* By some estimates, about eight inkjet and toner cartridges are thrown in the trash in the United States every second.
* Printer cartridge recycling industry analysts estimate that used inkjet and toner cartridges can be recycled and reused between 4 and 7 times.
* According to industry statistics, over 86% of inkjet cartridges consumed in the United States are not recycled, they're thrown in the trash. Toner cartridge recycling is a very large industry in the USA. It employs thousands of people yet over 1/2 of the used toner cartridges are still discarded every year. That translates to 350 million printer cartridges that end up in landfills or incinerators or about 875 million pounds of e-waste. Stacked end to end, these discarded printer cartridges would cover a distance of about 24,000 miles; enough distance to circle the earth.
* For every toner printer cartridge we recycle, we save at least 1/2 gallon of oil. With America consuming about 700 million gallons of oil per day, recycling printer cartridges is helping to save our natural resources, and curb additional greenhouse emissions.
* It is estimated that in the next seven years, if we recycle every inkjet and toner cartridge, a bridge can be built from the Earth to the Moon; that's a distance of 223,000 miles.
CELL PHONE RECYCLING
* Cell phone usage in the United States has surged from 340,000 subscribers in 1985 to about 170 million in 2004.
* On average, each American owns 3 or more cellular phones.
* The average life span of a cellular phone is 18 months.
* Industry experts estimate that 130 million cell phones will be obsolete and thrown away every year.
* It is estimated that up to 3/4 of all obsolete cell phones are stored away in drawers by people who don't know what else to do with them.
* In 2005, 500 million used cell phones were stockpiled in homes across America.
* Cellular phones contain toxic materials such as arsenic, lead, mercury, zinc, copper, and brominated flame retardants which can be released into the air if incinerated, and groundwater if disposed of in landfills. This creates threats to humans, animals, and the environment.
* Over 70 percent of all Americans do not know that they can recycle their old cell phone.
* In a recent survey, only 2.3% of Americans recycled their used cell phones and 7 percent threw them away. Surveys also suggest that 90% of Americans would recycle cell phones if it were convenient.
* Company employees offered cause-related programs such as recycling, are almost forty percent more likely to be proud of their company's values and mission than those whose work place do not.
* By offering employees program options which impact social issues, companies can provide a sense of meaningful work. This also can strengthen the company's organization.
THE INKJET PRINTER CARTRIDGE RECYCLING PROCESS
As noted earlier on our web site, about 86% of inkjet cartridges used in the United States are never recycled and end up in landfills or incinerators. Aside from the environmental benefits of printer cartridge recycling, people should consider the following: Using a recycled printer cartridge can save people up to 50%. Also, when inkjet cartridges are remanufactured properly, they can average between 5 and 7 refills. Some inkjet cartridges can be refilled as many as 15 times before they reach the end of their usefull lifespan.
So what do we mean by "remanufactured properly"? many people try to refill their cartridges at home with a refill kit which is admirable, but consider this: Home refill kits are messy, time consuming, inefficient, and the product packaging creates additional pollution. Most of this statement is obvious, but let's focus on the inefficient aspect of home recycling.
First, many of today's inkjet cartridges are pressurized. Home inkjet refilling kits lack the ability to re-pressurize the cartridges which can dramatically effect printer performance. In addition, professional commercial recyclers test and clean the cartridges vital components to make sure they're working properly. Also, it's important to note that the old ink left behind in the used printer cartridge can effect performance if not addressed commercially.
When considering the use of a recycled inkjet cartridge, it is important to understand how it works, and why it fails over time to print properly.
Have you ever wondered why inkjet printers are so inexpensive, but the cartridges are so costly? One reason is that the print head and circuitry of the system are built right into the the printer cartridge. These cartridge components actually do most of the work for the inkjet printer. There are dozens of tiny jet nozzles in the print head located on the bottom of the inkjet cartridge. Under the nozzle is a resistor which heats the ink inside the cartridge. Once heated, a bubble forms and bursts. This bursting shoots ink through the jets, and on to the paper. the result is a high quality print.
On most cartridges, the resistors will continue to work until they burn themselves out. On average, burnout happens about every sixth time an inkjet cartridge is recycled. It's important to note that this represents an average life span of a recycled ink jet cartridge, and not a pre-determined failure. As noted before, many ink jet cartridges can be recycled up to 15 times. Also, up to 5% of all inkjet cartridges fail to recycle one time.
When using recycled inkjet cartridges also consider not letting the ink run out completely. Many of today's inkjet printers will prompt you with a warning that the cartridge is running low on ink. The reason why you should never let your cartridge run totally out of ink is that the ink keeps the cartridge resistors from overheating. Once overheated, the printer cartridge is no longer any good. With tri-color cartridges, overheating of the cartridge resistors can occur if only one of the three colors runs out, which can ruin the entire printer cartridge.
The danger signals of your ink running out are lighter than normal print, and white streaks running through your print project. This might sound a little bit obvious, but again, we can't stress the importance of preventing damage to the inkjet cartridge resistors in regard to recycling.
Ink jet resistors aside, the cartridge can also be effected by worn out internal components, clogged nozzles, or ban circuits. If using a home refill kit, for the most part, it's impossible to determine these problems.
To extend the life of an inkjet cartridge you should also protect the circuitry on the bottom of the cartridge. Never put tape on the circuitry or print head. Also, avoid touching them directly with your fingers.
Finally, whether you are using new printer cartridges once or haing the same cartirges refilled over and over, be sure to recycle your cartridges through a reputable recycler. A good printer cartridge recycling company can properly dispose of non-working ink cartridges without risk of harm to the environment.
CURE Recycling is proud to be a representative of Envirosmart, the world's largest and most respected inkjet recycling remanufacturer. You can find our recycled inkjet cartridges on the shelves of most major retailers under the Nu-kote brand.
RECYCLE INKJET PRINTER CARTRIDGES AND CELL PHONES TODAY
Recycle your empty inkjet printer cartridges and used cell phones right away! CURE Recycling is free to join. All printer cartridge and cell phone recycling materials are provided free of charge. Also, there's never any charge for shipping your empty inkjet printer cartridges and cell phones for recycling.
Go ahead and start your inkjet printer cartridge recycling program today! Recycle to benefit pediatric cancer research, the environment, or as an ongoing fundraiser. Begin today, and you can have your free inkjet printer cartridge recycling materials in a week or less!
Remember, recycling inkjet cartridges, toner cartridges, and cell phones will reduce toxic ewaste in our nation's landfills. For those interested in a great ongoing fundraiser for schools, churches or non-profit organizations, CURE Recycling can help you raise funds on a regular basis! Imagine not having to take orders, keep inventory, or collect money for your fundraiser. CURE Recycling offers very generous payouts for fundraisers. We recycle a wide range of inkjet cartridges, toner cartridges, and cell phones. We even recycle several remanufactured or "virgin" cartridges, and pay cash for them! Raise funds by starting your inkjet printer cartridge cell phone recycling fundraiser today!