Apple has a great recycling program, but they are not the only company to offer such a program. Both RadioShack and Best Buy offer their own recycling programs. I thought it might be nice to share some information about these alternative programs with you on Earth Day.
The reason I’m mentioning this is due to the fact that I often hear from readers that aren’t close to an Apple Store. They often tell me that they may not even have a store in their city or state. Ouch.
Country living might be restful, but I’m glad that I live in a big city since Houston has six Apple Stores accessible to everyone living in Houston or the surrounding areas. Fortunately, some of you without such good access to Apple Stores just might have access to a RadioShack or a Best Buy. So let’s take a look at what they have to offer.
RadioShack offers rechargeable battery recycling on their website, but I checked with a local store and they advised me they take all kinds of batteries for recycling. The RadioShack website states that they only take rechargeable batteries with no mention of other types of batteries so check with your local store about their policies.
They will also recycle your old cell phone. The phone will be refurbished and resold whenever possible. They donate $1 from the cell phone resale to charity. In addition to cell phones RadioShack will also recycle other electronics like TVs, computers, monitors, etc. The rules vary from state to state and some states even require fees to be paid by the person disposing the equipment — not a good incentive to recycle if you ask me.
Finally, RadioShack offers their Trade and Save Program where you trade in your old gadgets and received a RadioShack gift card that can be applied to new merchandise purchases at one of their stores. Great idea, but you don’t have access to as many Apple goodies as you would have using Apple’s similar program.
Best Buy offers rechargeable battery recycling on their website, but the rules vary from state to state. So you’ll need to visit the Best Buy website for complete details and in some states disposal fees apply.
Best Buy stores have kiosks where you can drop off these batteries as well as ink and toner cartridges, wires, cords, and cables. Just walk in, drop off, and your done. It cannot get any easier or convenient.
Best Buy will also recycle your old electronics. This includes just about every thing I can think of, but their website offers a complete list. Computers, monitors, cell phones, TVs, etc. are all items you can recycle at Best Buy. If you have an appliance sitting in your computer room – i.e. a refrigerator they’ll recycle that too. I was grateful when they took my heavy and broken 200-plus pound 36″ CRT TV last year after I finally upgraded to a flat-panel TV.
Finally, like RadioShack Best Buy offers a Trade-in Program where you trade in your old gadgets and receive a Best Buy gift card that can be applied to new merchandise purchases at one of their stores. Great idea and this time you have better access to just about as many Apple goodies as you would have using Apple’s similar program in one of their stores.
I’m not a big fan of Best Buy’s Buy Back Program, but you might want to take a look at it too. Personally I don’t think it makes much sense from a consumer perspective.
The recycling programs that I wrote about today aren’t going to meet everyone’s recycling needs and they aren’t even the only ones out there. Therefore I strongly suggest that if you are interested in recycling (and I hope you are) that you contact your city or state officials for other alternatives. Additionally, you might find other recycling options in your local telephone directory or via internet search.
If we work together we can save the Earth or at least make it a better place for future generations by recycling responsibly. So what are you waiting for go recycle something, hug a tree while you are at it, or turn your old iMac into a lamp.
If you have ideas about recycling alternatives post a comment and share that idea with us.