It's Earth Day -- so don't just toss your old computer!

It's Earth Day today, and the consumer electronics industry isn't above a little shameless self-promotion to show off their green cred. And, we have to admit, recycling your old gear is a lot better than just tossing it into the basement -- or worse, a landfill. So follow the examples of these companies, and make your gear green!

  • Apple Computer will pay for shipping and environmentally friendly disposal of any old computer with the purchase of a new Mac from the company's retail or online stores. So, if you're a switcher, you can now let Apple deal with getting rid of that old Windows box, and if you're upgrading, Apple will give that old Quadra a proper send-off.

  • Sprint Nextel will spring for shipping and recycling or disposal of any brand of cellphone -- and you don't even need to buy anything. Just grab a prepaid mailing label from Sprint's web site, stuff your phone in an envelope and send it off. So forget about the sentimental value already and send off that MicroTAC.

  • Verizon Wireless will also accept any old cellphone for recycling -- but you have to bring it into one of their stores. But, hey, at least they're trying.

  • CTIA has more info about cellphone recycling programs nationwide.

  • Dell offers something called the Asset Recovery Program. It's similar to Apple's plan, but it's only good for corporate customers. So, if you're an IT manager and you're about to upgrade, get Dell to clear out your old stuff, dude.

  • Staples will give you $30 worth of coupons if you drop off an old computer for recycling -- at least at certain Chicago-area stores. We hope the coupons are good on items like recycled printer paper, so you can double your greenie points.

  • 100 Percent Day is a project sponsored by Microsoft, Intel, the US Chamber of Commerce and others with the goal of collecting 100,000 computers for recycling -- today. The project's web site has a list of dropoff locations where you can bring your gear.

  • For more ideas, visit the official Earth Day web site.