Count the number of computers, cell phones and TVs in your home. The average household now has 25 electronic devices. And with technology changing at lightning speed, we go through them faster than ever before. A local business is now expanding to recycle all our old electronics.
Millennium Recycling's Sioux Falls facility sorts and disassembles 600 tons of computers, TVs, cell phones and a variety of other electronic devices every year.
The materials are then resold on the open market and reused in a variety of ways.
"We're investing many thousands of dollars to get his e-stewardship certification. It's kind of the gold standard of electronic recycling certification and it will allow us to prove that anyone who buys our product or brings their stuff to us to recycle, especially businesses, that we are doing it right," Shaun Feilmeier of Millennium Recycling said.
The city of Sioux Falls has been collecting electronics for its recycling program and shipping them off to a Wisconsin eCycler. But it's just awarded Millennium's electronic recycling division, called Bargain Bytes, the $63,000 annual contract instead.
"What this means for us is we are able to take Bargain Bytes and branch it off to a whole new business on its own," Feilmeier said.
When Bargain Bytes becomes the city's recycler, it will double its space in its 13,500 square foot facility. That's going to happen after the first of the year.
Bargain Bytes will also add a few more jobs. But not everything that comes into this facility gets destroyed.
"Some of the stuff we get, we can repair. And if we can repair it, put a new operating system on it, new software, get it to work and we sell it in our store," Feilmeier said.
And that's where you'll find refurbished laptops for less than $200. When the eCycling business expands, so will the retail side of Bargain Bytes, giving consumers a way to save money and the environment at the same time.
You can drop off your old electronics at the Sioux Falls City Environmental Center, or at Millennium Recycling's Bargain Bytes facility.
Sioux Falls Environmental Center
1017 East Chambers Street
M-F: 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Millennium Recycling/Bargain Bytes
305 E 50th St N
Sioux Falls, SD 57104