By Michael Regan
The Tonawanda News
Tonawanda News — Goodwill Industries of Western New York has staked a claim as one of the early recyclers in the history of the nation, collecting just about every odd and end since its inception in the early 1900s.
But with 42,000 pounds of electronics donated to its facilities across the region each month, Goodwill’s leadership has decided to make their efforts more succinct and environmentally responsible, according to president and CEO Thomas Lynch.
Lynch said his organization has formed a partnership with a Sunnking Electronics Recycling, making the thousands of outdated computers, cell phones, printing machines and other electronics a one-stop venture for the Goodwill.
“We don’t say ‘no’ to a whole lot of stuff,” he said. “We pretty much take anything. But the deal with Sunnking makes it so much easier for us.”
For years, Lynch said, the electronic “donations” were taken to a variety of companies, wasting time and resources. But after the Goodwill began to look at the amount it actually collected in Western New York, leaders at the local outfit felt there must be a way to do it better.
“We looked at the donations we get and the donations we send to the dump,” he said. “We were recovering 92 percent, which sounds pretty good, but 8 percent was a big number when you look at the number of pounds.”
After perusing various options and consulting with a Goodwill operation in the Rochester area that also exclusively utilizes the services of a certified electronics recycling company, Lynch said Sunnking “seemed like the best option.”
“By 2020 and hopefully sooner we want to be landfill-free,”Lynch said.
The partnership will also address confidentiality concerns, as Sunnking shreds some of the equipment it receives and also wipes out data from old computers and cell phones, eliminating the threat of data theft and identity leaks and adding another layer of confidence for donators, according to Adam Shine, a manager for the company.
“We know that Goodwill has a tremendous reputation and has their pick of service providers so we are thankful to be their service partner,” Shine said. “By adding Goodwill to our extensive collection network it allows residents considerably more free, easy and convenient ways to drop off old, obsolete and unwanted electronics.”
Goodwill has three locations set up in the Tonawandas, including the Colvin-Eggert and Mid City plazas and in the parking lot of Tops Friendly Markets on Niagara Street.Contact reporter Michael Regan at 693-1000, ext. 4115.