Bring out your dead electronics

CHAMPAIGN — The first Champaign County residential electronics recycling event of the year will be Saturday morning at The News-Gazette distribution center.

Area residents are invited to bring all old and unwanted electronics items to the center, 3202 Apollo Drive, C, from 8 a.m. to noon Saturday. Access to the facility will be from the intersection of North Market Street and East Olympian Drive.

The event will be held rain or shine, said Susan Monte, Champaign County's recycling coordinator.

Items that can be accepted at the event — free of charge — include televisions, computers, laptops, computer monitors, printers, scanners, keyboards, mice, cables, zip drives, fax machines, VCRs, cable receivers, satellite receivers, digital converter boxes, DVD and MPA3 players, PDAs, video game consoles, mobile phones and microwave ovens. There is a limit of 10 items per person.

Illinois law now prohibits the disposal of electronic items in landfills.

"Electronic items contains metals such as lead, cadmium and mercury," said Monte. "These metals are harmful to the environment unless responsibly managed."

The items collected Saturday by teams of community service volunteers will be refurbished or recycled.

At the last electronics recycling event in Champaign County, held last October, 157,129 pounds or 78.6 tons of electronics items were collected.

Four collection events in Champaign County last year yielded a total of 206.7 tons of electronics. In 2010, four local collection events brought in 291 tons of electronics.

Two more collections events are tentatively scheduled in Champaign County this year, on Saturday, Aug. 4 and Saturday, Oct. 13, both at The News-Gazette distribution center, Monte said.

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