Many electronic components can be repurposed or safely broken down, but some can not be recycled, including would-be reusable components that are sufficiently damaged.
Cathode Ray Tube televisions and computer monitors have been obsolete for some time, yet plenty of organizations are just now starting to get rid of them. They are considerably larger, heavier, and electrically inefficient than current options and would not be reusable simply due to lack of demand. Due lead located in the funnel glass portion, cathode ray tubes are marked as Hazardous Waste by the EPA.
Liquid Crystal Displays, commonly referred to as LCD screens, are perfectly reusable if in-tact. However, LCD screens contain mercury lamps, obviously containing mercury. If the LCD screen is damaged or the mercury lamp is separated from the screen, it must be disposed of properly. Mercury is also marked as Hazardous Waste by the EPA.
Polyvinyl Chloride, more commonly known as PVC, is a type of plastic found numerous places, including electronics in the form of wire covering and tubing. It is recognized by the EPA as a Group A human carcinogen and should not be recycled.
When not disposed of properly, these items regularly find their way to underdeveloped countries and simply burned, releasing their toxicity into the air and leeching into the ground water.