We have two desktop computers, three laptops, two video cameras, a digital camera, two cell phones, a scanner, three TVs, eight remote controls, three DVRs, a Google TV box, a Kindle, an iPad, a dozen or so external drives and coming soon, an iPod Touch. That puts us only about average according to the Consumer Electronics Association. They say the average U.S. household has about 24 electronic gadgets.

(What Bob wants to know and is not made clear in the information release is what do they count as electronic devices? Do they count microwave ovens? How about stereos, clock-radios, digital watches? What about fluorescent light bulbs, which all have electronic circuitry built into the base to control the voltage.)

About two million tons worth of the more obvious electronic gadgets are discarded each year, and less than 20 percent are recycled, according to the Environmental Protection Agency. The rest end up in landfills, where toxic materials such as lead, mercury and beryllium can leak. We’re doing our bit by keeping our junk in the closet. Only the next ice age will bury it.

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