Personal computers just aren't PC

Before you pitch your PC, keep this in mind: The old saying about "returning to dust" does not apply. When you ditch that Dell, toss the Toshiba or 86 the IBM, it could come back to haunt all of us.

When it comes to the environment, PCs aren't too PC -- as in politically correct.

A research team from the UN University of Tokyo found that personal computers are the environmental equivalent of "My Big, Fat, Obnoxious Fiancee." Not only do they take up a lot space, they also have a hearty appetite for unhealthy things.

The research team said that PCs eat up ten times their "birth" weight in chemicals and fossil fuels during the manufacturing process. When it's time to trash them -- and the PC lifespan is getting shorter and shorter -- they go into landfills. Not only do they start piling up like a heap of "Lord of the Rings" Oscars, they also generously share their toxic innards with the earth. PCs aren't exactly made with wholesome ingredients. Many of those chemicals are toxic, and fossil fuels are associated with global warming.

The research group concluded that countries across the globe must act in order to counter the potential damage of putting PCs out to pasture. One method: Give manufacturers and buyers incentives to upgrade or re-use hardware instead of pitching it. Which sounds like a good idea -- you certainly don't want Greenpeace to ram your monitor or tower with one of their boats.

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