The Story of Electronics

February 10, 2011

Annie Leonard, creator of the popular viral video Story of Stuff has a new project – a collaboration with the Electronics TakeBack Coalition – that has resulted in this short video. The video describes the basic life-cycle of electronics, pointing out the dangers of using toxic materials in electronic devices to both factory workers and recyclers – especially when consumers purchase, use, and quickly discard these objects.


Besides the issue of toxicity it’s also helpful to note other environmental issues associated with electronics, including:

  • Electronics and the infrastructure that powers them use significant amounts of energy, and other resources like water (as a coolant).
  • Many materials used to create electronics that are mined from the earth are of limited supply – we can recycle them to some extent, but we generally can’t create them.

This conversation with Greenpeace’s Casey Harrell, as well as this interview with e-waste photographer Misty Keasler, add some additional insight.

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