Amidst the whiz-bang TV sets and the funky consumer gizmos of this year's CES in Las Vegas, one of the more interesting product unveilings that caught our eye so far is this team-up between a popular computer maker and an actress/activist/entrepreneur.
Not only will this new venture bring affordable gold jewelry pieces to the public, it's also meant to raise awareness about an important issue that's facing tech consumers - sustainability, recycling and electronic waste management.
According to the Environmental Protection Agency, 35,000 pounds of copper, 772 pounds of silver, 75 pounds of gold and 33 pounds of palladium can be extracted from a million recycled cellphones.
The issues start when we upgrade our laptops and phones every few years, the e-waste from our old recycled gadgets might just end up in landfills, adding to environmental pollution and hazards.
Dell and Nicki Reed's golden plan
In an effort to help keep these hazards in check, Dell has partnered with Twilight actress Nikki Reed to re-purpose these precious metals into something everyone will surely recognize - jewelry!
Dubbed the Circular Collection, this new jewelry line uses gold from recycled computers that Dell collects. The line includes 14- and 18- carat gold rings, cufflinks, and earrings made completely from recycled gold (not gold-plated).
These products are sold directly through Nicki Reed's online store Bayou With Love, with prices ranging from a $78 gold ball ring to a $348 pair of cufflinks.
To produce this line, Dell stated that it takes around six computer motherboards to produce a single piece of jewelry.
Reed, who is known for advocacy for sustainability, hopes to raise awareness with the venture. She also wants to keep the jewelry line's prices affordable to educate consumers about the importance of tech recycling.
Not only that, Dell will also use recycled gold in the motherboards of its new computers, such as the upcoming Latitude 5285, and the company states that this is an industry-first.
Dell is also promising to recycle 100 million pounds of electronic waste into its computer components by the year 2020. The company said that only 12.5 percent of e-waste is currently being recycled into other products and Americans waste around $60 million in gold and silver every year because of discarded mobile phones alone.
How to recycle your old gadgets
To contribute to this effort, Dell has various options for recycling your old electronic gadgets.
Dell Reconnect - You can drop off your used gadgets, even non-Dell branded products, at more than 2,000 participating Goodwill locations for free via the Dell Reconnect Program.
Mail-back Recycling - Dell also provides a free recycling service. Print a prepaid shipping label, box up your old gadgets (again, any brand will do), then either schedule a FedEx pickup or drop them off at your nearest FedEx location.
Dell Trade-In Program - You can also trade in your used gadgets for Dell gift cards via the company's Trade-In program.
To read more about Dell's various recycling programs, click here.
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