Advanced Technology Recycling (ATR), a family-run company in the United States, recently announced that it has shattered an existing world record for recycling the highest volume of e-waste in a week. The company said that this feat now takes them to the Guinness Book of World Records, replacing the current contender who hails from Australia. The recycling event, which was followed closely by local media, was held to mark World Earth Day. As part of the record, ATR ‘de-manufactured’ and recycled approximately 1.2 million oz of e-waste gathered from six different facilities spread across five American states in a time span of one week.
According to ATR, the attempt to break the existing record—set back in 2013—was closely overseen by an official representing the Guinness World Records. The recycling event was conducted on April 25 at the company’s corporate HQs in Pontiac, Illinois.
Speaking to a group of visitors, the company’s co-founder, Ken Ehresman, said that the e-waste recycling initiative was a massive challenge. At the same time, it marked the successful diversion of waste material from the landfills. Over the last few years, the company has demonstrated how an enterprise can successfully turn discarded electronics items into a lucrative business and, at the same time, reduce the pressure on filled-to-the-brim landfills.
According to Ehresman, most of the waste that the company receives does not have much worth – this is especially true of glass parts used in obsolete computer monitors and televisions. However, chips and circuit boards often carry valuable materials. The company sources most of its waste from municipal corporations. It also has several neighborhood collection sites.
Among other activities, the company also undertakes the re-purposing of new electronic devices that remained unsold or became obsolete even before they could leave the warehouses. The significance of correctly handling e-waste came into the spotlight once again when AT&T was slapped with a US$50 million file recently for consciously dumping its electronic scrap into the regular waste stream.