Recycling DVDs/CDs

Recycling DVDs/CDs is becoming more popular. While DVDs/CDs are still used to contain data and sold as commercial products, they are being replaced by other forms of data storage, in many cases. Even though this is the case, there is still a huge amount of DVDs/CDs in the world that their owners would probably like to get rid of. One of the real drawbacks to these media storage devices is the fact that, if thrown in a landfill, it would take them hundreds of years to degrade, perhaps even more.


The Process

DVDs/CDs contain materials including aluminum, polycarbonate plastic, and more. Aluminum, as most people are well aware, is one of the most profitable materials for recycling. Polycarbonate plastic can also be easily recycled. The polycarbonate plastic used to manufacture DVDs/CDs also has the notable characteristic of being exceptionally environmentally unfriendly, which makes recycling it even more imperative. It’s a petroleum product, so it’s dangerous if tossed away in the environment but easily recycled if it’s handled properly after the product of which it’s made is disposed of.

DVDs/CDs sometimes even contain a small amount of gold in them. This gold can be reclaimed and, because it’s so incredibly expensive at the moment, it’s worth it for businesses to recycle these materials.

The Benefits

The benefits of recycling DVDs/CDs are myriad. First and foremost, the non-biodegradable materials of which they are made does not end up in a landfill somewhere. Recycled DVDs/CDs can also be used to produce more of the same product, or a host of other products. Because there is so much data that is bought and sold in this format, there is a huge industry for recycling these items. Even if DVDs/CDs became completely obsolete tomorrow, there would still be enough of a backlog of these items to power a recycling industry for some time.