How to Get Rid of Unwanted CDs, VHS Tapes

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    NEWSLETTERS

    The titles may be bit a bit embarrassing, but just dumping your old CDs, DVDs or VHS tapes into the trash isn't the most eco-friendly way to to get rid of them. (Published Thursday, Sep 9, 2010)

    The titles may be bit a bit embarrassing, but just dumping your old CDs, DVDs or VHS tapes into the trash isn't the most eco-friendly way to to get rid of them.

    The contents of CDs, DVDs, VHS and more can be toxic to the environment and the plastic casing can take hundreds of years to decompose. 

    A better way?  Resale shops like Goodwill say they should be among your first options. 

    "There is still a market.  People still have the players for them.  They still need the media and where else are you going to get it? If you go on eBay you can spend a lot of money or come here and get it for 49 cents.  [It's] not a bad deal," said Dan Michael, the manager of a Goodwill store in Naperville.

    And if they can’t take it, they have recyclers that do it the right way.

    "If we had something that came in broken, most items we send up to our hub and they have recyclers for those items," Michael explained.

    But what about the family videos, the tapes of cheerleading competitions and other memories that aren't meant for general consumption?  First, wipe them clean of the data you don't want the public to see.  Then, consider any of the several companies that will take the media for recycling.

    Among them:

    GreenDisk.com

    CD Recycling Center of America

    MRC Polymers