"Reuse and recycling are far and away the preferred methods of e-scrap management—and with sufficient infrastructure, nearly all discarded electronic products could be technically and economically recyclable," say four major recycling and solid waste management associations. The four associations joined together to promote the importance of reuse and recycling as the best way to manage discarded electronic products such as obsolete computers, monitors, televisions and cell phones, and to offer their assistance in the development of a comprehensive nationwide framework that will ensure that these goods are reused or recycled.
The Integrated Waste Services Association (IWSA), the National Recycling Coalition (NRC), the National Solid Wastes Management Association (NSWMA), and the Solid Waste Association of North America (SWANA) added that a solution at the federal level can provide a framework that could be complemented by each State, providing some standardization while allowing the States the flexibility to implement more stringent programs, if desired.
"NSWMA and its members are committed to working with other associations to ensure that recycling electronics products does not become an unfunded mandate for local governments or their private sector recycling contractors," said Bruce Parker, NSWMA's President and CEO.
These groups have committed themselves to the goal of greatly increasing to nearly 100 percent the recycling of e-scrap in the U.S. within ten years. They are calling on all electronic product manufacturers, recyclers, retailers, federal, state and local governments, environmental groups, trade associations and other stakeholders to work together to attain this goal.
"The recycling of computer equipment fuels economic activity, creates jobs and diverts potentially hazardous materials from landfills. Today, hundreds of companies and organizations exist throughout the U.S. to process computer products for reuse and recycling. We believe that with a concerted national effort America can reach a 100% goal of recycling and reuse of all discarded electronics," said Kate Krebs, Executive Director, National Recycling Coalition.
The coalition is supporting, as a starting point, the adoption of financial incentives such as tax credits to consumers, manufacturers, retailers and recyclers for recycling old or unwanted computers, monitors and other electronic scrap waste, such as that proposed by Sen. Ron Wyden (D-OR).
"This agreement acknowledges the importance of ensuring that the appropriate parties manage electronic scrap materials in an environmentally responsible and equitable manner," said Ted Michaels, President of IWSA.
"I am very pleased that the various recycling and solid waste management associations were able to reach common ground on this important issue. Perhaps this will encourage Congressional action on financial incentives to increase e-scrap recycling," said SWANA Executive Director and CEO John H. Skinner, Ph.D.
The statement, in it's entirety can be seen here.
Association Contact Information:
Director, State Programs
Legislative and Regulatory Program Manager
The Solid Waste Association of North America (SWANA) is an organization of more than 10,000 public and private sector professionals committed to advancing from solid waste management to resource management through their shared emphasis on education, advocacy and research. For close to 60 years, SWANA has been the leading association in the solid waste management field. SWANA serves industry professionals through technical conferences, certifications, publications and a large offering of technical training courses.