003 - Recycling and 


Geographic Knowledge and Understanding

The disposal and recycling of consumer items, including international flows of waste.

Key Concepts

The process of recycling creates possibilities for increased global interactions. The movement of waste can often pass from wealthier to poorer places.


To understand what the difference between the disposal of waste and recycling is.

To have knowledge of how our waste passes beyond  national boundaries and the impact that this has on the country of destination.

Key Terminology

Define the terms above by using the 'Useful Links' below.

Useful Links

Activity One - Empathy

Every one of you owns more than one electrical device, whether it may be a phone, laptop, tablet, home computer, printer, TV, camera etc, do you ever consider what happens to you device once you upgrade? Maybe you leave it in a drawer or your garage for a while before you take it to the tip (dechetterie) but where does it go to then? A lot of our electrical equipment will be sent abroad for dismantling and perhaps parts of it recycled, but who does it?

Useful Resource

Activity Two - Describe

Now you have some empathy for the people who are dealing with our waste we now need to look at the types of electronics or e-waste that we 'dump', why we 'dump' it and where it goes. Watch the youtube clip below and answer the questions provided on the life cycle of our electronics.


Activity Three - Describe

We could have focused on any type of waste but as we send our obsolete devices such as chrome books to school-supported charities it is important to think about the direct impact we are having . Below is a map of where the known and suspected routes of e-waste are. Answer the questions below by using the map, youtube clip, and the articles in the 'Useful Resources' box.

Useful Resources

Following the E-waste Trail


Activity Four - Recycling

While we may not like to think of where our electronics go to 'die' and the impact that it has on human health, this waste is in some form recycled. Unfortunately recycling is not always a clean green process such as the one that turns our plastic bottles into fleeces. Your task is to use the resources below to create a detailed example of how e-waste is recycled. Remember to include the following:

Computer Recycling

Short summary of the issue of e-waste recycling

Vanessa Kanbi

The world's largest e-waste site

Activity Five - The Future

So we have so far looked at perhaps the dark side of recycling and one that we would like to put out of our minds but is there another way? Read the article in the 'Useful Resources' box and make notes on what we could do to recycle our e-waste more ethically.

Exam Style Question

Explain two positive reasons to recycle [2+2].