Negative Impact of Computer Plastic on the Environment

Do you know how much of a computer is made out of plastics? Do you know how that impacts the environment? Check out this article to learn more.

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Active computerization testifies to scientific and technical progress, and at the same time, the computer remains the main factor in the degradation and destruction of the biosphere. The main reason for the negative impact on the environment is the material from which the computer is made – plastic. Why can’t digital industry giants abandon plastic, and how does it affect the environment? You will find answers to these questions below in our article.

robots and plastics

In our time, people cannot do without computers. Electronics are present in all areas of human life: the computer plots courses for ships and aircraft, control space stations, gives access to blocked content using the VPN Israel, USA, Austria, Italy, and other, create projects for various buildings, and is a source of inexhaustible information.

Plastic In Computer Manufacturing

The base material for most modern laptops is a mixture of two synthetic materials: acrylonitrile butadiene styrene and polycarbonate. In short: ABS+PC. The first of the components, ABS plastic, is about half the price of polycarbonate, but in its pure form, it has some drawbacks, to correct which a second component is added to the mixture.

The main advantage of this mixture is the ease of production. Plastic is excellent for precision casting: it is easy to make a part of literally any shape from it, with all the nuances like air duct grilles, legs and stands for attaching electronic components, screw holes, and miniature latches for fastening panels to each other.

In addition, plastic does not need additional processing. The most accessible computers are made of simple unpainted plastic. However, such a combination of synthetics harms the environment – we found five examples that prove it.

How Does Computer Plastic Affect the Environment?

Computer components have changed over the years. Today, a computer is typically 40 percent steel, 30 to 40 percent plastic, 10 percent aluminum, and 10 percent other metals, including copper, gold, silver, cadmium, and platinum. If metal is a natural component, then plastic is a synthetic that has been killing the environment for the last 100 years. How? Below we have brought five examples that clearly demonstrate the negative impact of computer plastic on the environment.

Computer Plastics Decompose Hundreds of Years

Plastic products, especially heavy computer plastics such as a hard drive, motherboard, or power supply, do not decompose entirely and remain in the environment for hundreds or even thousands of years. Instead of completely degrading and naturally reabsorbing back into the environment, most plastics will break down little by little, releasing small pieces of plastic into the environment where they can be ingested by wildlife. This process can lead to contamination of groundwater sources, rivers, and streams.

Plastics Are Killing the Ocean

A disturbing aspect of the use of plastic that people are just beginning to realize is the damage plastic is doing to the oceans. Whether you’ve heard about it from Sir David Attenborough, the media in general, or read about it here, the damage plastic is causing to marine life worldwide is beyond question. Approximately 150 million metric tons of plastic are currently in the ocean, and 30% of this is electronic products. This means that our oceans and their inhabitants are being suffocated by the plastic being thrown away.

Creatures living in the ocean are killed by stray plastic floating in the water and plastic fragments that they mistake for real food. Pieces of plastic end up in the body of marine life, and as digital companies produce more and more gadgets, this problem will only worsen.

Also, we can find plastic on shore, sometimes years after being thrown into the ocean. Its longevity as a material means it is nearly impossible to remove from the environment and can make a spectacular impact on once-pristine natural beaches worldwide.

Computer Plastic Harms the Air

To recycle computer products, certain plastic recycling companies burn them. This way of getting rid of such garbage causes more significant harm to the planet. Burning plastic spews about seventy chemicals into the air, dangerous to living beings, including humans. If plastic burning becomes practiced everywhere and becomes a standard technology for utilizing plastic waste, poor health and deaths are not excluded. Among the seventy elements, some contribute to irritation of the respiratory organs and take away their ability to counteract various diseases.

In addition, such a significant release of chemicals entails another global catastrophe – climate change. Under the influence of solar radiation or burning tools, plastic emits impurities of greenhouse gases methane and ethylene, and emissions increase over time. These chemical elements have a significant impact on the climate. Namely, they contribute to the development of global warming. The more computer products are disposed of by incineration – the faster global warming will occur.

Computer Plastic Kills Humanity

Today, plastic microparticles can be found everywhere: in the atmosphere, in water bodies, and on the ground. Plastic particles poison the body with pesticides and bisphenols, penetrating the gastrointestinal tract – these elements cause a blow to the hormonal system of people. Pieces of plastic can retard cell growth – this will be the first cause of the pathology of the body’s actions.

The pollution of our planet with plastic waste and its impact on humanity is reported by a study by scientist Mark Brown, made back in 2008. They reveal the terrible truth about the effects of plastic on the human body. Plastic particles inhaled with the air and those we take with food poison the body with toxic elements. In particular, some plastic components can be a factor in the onset of serious diseases: from diabetes to oncology.


Such sad statistics of the negative impact of plastic indicate that plastic consumption needs to be reduced, and computer products, which are still difficult to refuse, are separately collected and recycled. Of all the plastic produced in the world since 1950, only 9% has been recycled. Consequently, the further fate of the planet and humanity is solely in our hands.

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