Everyone is familiar with the explosive growth of data. According to the IDC Digital Universe study, by 2020 organizations will manage 50 times more information than they do today. This prediction is not farfetched when you consider:
- 2.9 million emails are sent every second
- 50 million tweets per day
- 20 hours of YouTube videos are uploaded every minute
- 1.3 exabytes of data sent and received by mobile internet users
With so much data being created, there is an equal explosion in devices to store and access that data — with 300 million computers and one billion cell phones produced every year. As IT Departments add newer and faster devices, there are plenty of old to discard. This old is electronic waste or what is commonly called e-waste. In 2011 the EPA reported that 2.31 million tons of e-waste was ready for destruction.
What does 2.31 million tons of e-waste look like? How many landfills are loaded with e-waste? How many tractor trailers does it take to move 2.31 million tons of old electronics? It was hard for me to imagine, until I read an article on the 100th anniversary of the sinking of the Titanic. With this milestone, both tragic and romantic stories are being retold in newspapers and magazines across the globe. My local paper had an entire section devoted to the facts from the night of April 14, 1912.
One interesting fact was the Titanic weighed 45,000 tons. So how many ships would equal the e-waste ready for destruction? I called my son, who is a pretty good math student, to grab his scientific calculator and help me out. The answer is 53. There are 53 piles, the size of a luxury ocean liner, loaded with old computers, printers, mobile phones, cables, servers and other relics. That is a lot of e-waste!
When you think about 53 giant piles, Iron Mountain and our customers are concerned about the impact on the environment. To mitigate risk and comply with federal and state regulations, hard drives need to be properly destroyed or shredded, then they can be responsibly recycled. Make the right choice with an e-Stewards recycler. e-Stewards recyclers are committed to the highest standard for environmentally and socially responsible management of e-waste. I am proud that my company has partnered with CloudBlue, a certified e-Stewards certified recycler.
To learn more, visit here.