Greentec: a quarter century in electronics recovery


Tony Perrotta (top left) and his team at Greentec HQ in Cambridge, Ontario.

In 1995, Tony Perrotta started by collecting and recycling ink and toner cartridges. He led the organization over the next decade through several expansion phases, and key certifications, including ISO 14001 and OSHA. In 2005, Greentec expanded recycling services to cellphones and electronics, and in 2010 the company grew into a new 83,000-square-foot facility, completed OHSAS 18001 certification and started both its ITAD (IT Asset Disposition) business and high-volume e-waste processing. By 2017, Greentec also had R2 (Responsible Recycling Practices) and NAID (National Association for Information Destruction) industry certifications in place. 

Today, Greentec offers a range of services including secure pick up and removal of IT assets and waste, certified data destruction, electronics refurbishing and recycling as well as sustainability reporting for corporate clients. On average, the company manages between 12,000 and 16,000 tons per year of material, including both recovered assets (re-usable IT assets and equipment) and scrap e-waste. 

In 2019, Perrotta says they repurposed over 114,000 IT devices, while between 2010 and 2019, they recycled about 60,000 tons of end-of-life electronics waste.  
“We’re growing at about 30 percent year-over-year,” Perrotta says.”Our growth is coming mostly from our IT asset disposition and e-scrap recovery.

“Our speciality is managing data containing devices. For example, we manage equipment for entire data centres, when a company is going through server refreshes or storage and network refreshes, as well as data for endpoint devices such as desktops, laptops, computers, tablets and mobile phones.”

The processes they use, along with the employees and logistics they have in place, all have to comply with strict NAID standards for data destruction. These standards provide specific instructions on how to destroy various data types, with a main element of the certification focused on the people that have access to sensitive materials and information in the secure IT disposal environment. Background checks on all employees are required and facilities need to be secure with safeguards in place. Plus, all trucks and materials collected need to be closely tracked. 

For Greentec, end-of-life IT assets are “repurposed” via sale or donation, if they are not damaged or otherwise unusable. 

“If a company goes through a refresh and they have working assets they need to dispose of, we use specialized equipment that allows us to perform data erasure and functional testing of devices on a large scale,” explains Perrotta. “We can collect and perform a wipe on 450 hard drives simultaneously. After we’ve done the wiping of an asset, we have to be able to test it to make sure that there is no information left on the device. It can then be safely and securely resold or donated for reuse.”


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