Cashing in on E-Waste

Written by Ian Bellamy

What do you do when your mobile phone dies? It’s a shame to simply throw it away, especially since it’s loaded with gold, silver, copper and other valuable raw materials.

Not to mention larger electronic devices, such as computers and tablets.

A German company, ALBA, has agreed to work with their national post office, who will collect any old electronic devices that will fit in an A4-sized envelop. The company will then harvest materials and reuse up to 80 percent of them.

Germany gets over 20 percent of its electricity from renewable sources, and has one the most developed recycling programs in the world.

There is, according to six categories of recyclables in place:

  • the yellow bin for packaging materials,
  • the brown bin for compostables,
  • the blue bin for paper,
  • the white glass bin,
  • the colored glass bin, and
  • the grey bin for the rest of the trash.

Recycling programs such as these are not unheard of. Cell for Cash (who is not currently accepting orders) was known to take old mobile phones and refurbish them for sale in developing countries. The Cash for Clunkers program in the U.S. would also scrap the old vehicles for the metal.

E-Waste is becoming a bigger problem day in and day out, as it accounts for 70 percent of overall toxic garbage.

According to Recyclebank, a company that encourages people to recycle, “The total annual global volume of e-waste is expected to reach about 40 million metric tons. In the U.S. alone, it is estimated that we generated 1.5 billion pounds of all kinds of e-waste in 2006. This includes an estimated 44 million computers and televisions.”

Of course, this is only going to increase in time as more people get cell phones and computers and the rate which technology is becoming updated.

It’s harmful to see retired cell phones as “waste,” because in fact it is a resource. A functional phone can be donated, and a broken one can be refurbished or recycled. With the amount of e-waste that is already present and the amount that we will produce in the future, it is inevitable that we will have to keep in mind our limited resources, especially with regard to rare-earth minerals that are found in everyday devices.

We can expect that as the problem of e-waste becomes more dire, we’ll see more programs and companies, and it appears that Germany is leading the way.

Gold Price Holds Firm Despite Dollar Strength: Investing In Gold Is The Best Option

Investing in Gold


Are you afraid of investing in stocks and mutual funds when the world economy is still struggling to get better? If we think about investing in CDs and fixed deposits to make it secure, the decreasing interest rate offered by banks are not very encouraging. In some parts of the world, for example in India, people have a tendency of buying gold as a part of their long term investment plans. This article will help you to understand how fast you can grow your money by investing in gold.

Gold Price:

Have you ever given in-depth thought to the increase in the price of gold globally? If you look at the analysis done for the past 10 years, you will be surprised to find that the price of gold has greatly increased. In 2001 it was as low as US$ 255.95 per ounce, and now, in 2010, the price of gold is US$ 1217.40. Investing in gold also provides long term capital gain to buyers.

Gold Bar:

Gold bar, also known as gold brick, is classified into two categories: ‘minted’ and ‘casted’, depending on the method in which it was processed. Mitsubishi Materials Corporation manufactured the world’s largest gold bar, that weighed around 250 kg. Investing in a gold bar also gives the buyer great purchasing power.

Gold Coin:

Since we are in an era of declining monetary value, investing in gold coins is the best option to protect your wealth. The best part of a gold coin is its 24k value, whereas buying gold in jewelry form may not have this advantage. If you watch the market closely, millions of dollar transactions are made on gold coins. You can also get gold coins with designs such as the Canada maple leaf, religious signs, and sculptures of gods from different cultures.


Be it a long term or a short term investment, there are chances with other investment options that can lead to ‘capital loss’. Gold is the only investment mode that is going to keep your money growing and secure. Investing in gold will surely protect your wealth, and is a well accepted option globally, providing potential profits at all times.