Computers can go to good cause or have components recycled

We are getting a new computer this week. I know I've read of places that will take old ones in good shape. Do you have a list of such places or a starting place I might try? Thanks.

— Andrea B., Medford

Andrea, our incredible sleuths here at Since You Asked Detective and Modeling Agency (don't ask) searched high and low and stretched their brains to the maximum to produce a plethora of information for you. OK, actually, they Googled it. At any rate, here's what they found.

As you may already know, a new state law took effect Jan. 1, 2010, prohibiting the disposal of computers, TVs, monitors and other electronic devices in garbage or landfills. The law also instituted several free recycling options for people like you who would like to see an old computer reused.

Tom Pentland, who works for Connecting Point, a Medford computer center, suggested that if your soon-to-be-surplus computer is a recent model in good working condition that you should consider donating it through the National Cristina Foundation, which gives the computers to people with disabilities, economically disadvantaged persons, schools, nonprofit organizations and charities. For a list of donation requirements, visit the website at

If you're computer does not meet the prerequisites, there's always the state-mandated recycling program, administered locally through Goodwill and ECS Refining.

Goodwill provides convenient drop-off locations in Medford at 11 W. Jackson St.; in Ashland at 635 Tolman Creek Road; and in Central Point at 507 S. Front St. From there computers are transported to their partners in e-cycling, ECS Regenesys, and then to ECS Refining in Santa Clara, Calif., where computers are broken down to their base components and recycled, says Suzy Lewis, vice president of retail and operations for Southern Oregon Goodwill Industries. Last year alone, Goodwill collected and recycled 414,168 pounds of "e-waste."

You can visit websites at or to find other drop-off locations.

Send questions to "Since You Asked," Mail Tribune Newsroom, P.O. Box 1108, Medford, OR 97501; by fax to 541-776-4376; or by e-mail to We're sorry, but the volume of questions received prevents us from answering all of them.

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