Landmark E-Waste Export Bill Introduced to Stop Global E-Waste Dumping Environmentalists and Electronic Manufacturers Support Effort
U.S. Representatives Gene Green and Mike Thompson yesterday introduced new landmark legislation – H.R. 6252, The Responsible Electronics Recycling Act of 2010 – to stop U.S. “recyclers” from dumping electronic waste on developing countries. The bill is supported by environmental groups as well as electronic manufacturers Apple, Dell, and Samsung, all of which already have policies that prohibit the export of e-waste to developing nations.
GAO Report Correctly Calls for e-Waste Export Controls, but Misses the Mark with Recommendation on Basel Convention
Congress released a Government Accountability office (GAO) report today – Electronic Waste: Considerations for Promoting Environmentally Sound Reuse and Recycling – that seeks to address the management and trade of hazardous electronic wastes. The report correctly urges the EPA to deal with the massive flows of U.S. e-waste, however, the report misses the mark in recommending that the EPA put forward legislation that would ratify the Basel Convention, without first prohibiting the export of hazardous wastes such as electronic waste to developing countries.
A federal court judge today dismissed the lawsuit filed last July by the electronics industry associations against the New York City electronics waste recycling law. The case was rendered moot when the New York legislature passed a statewide e-waste bill that pre-empted the City’s law. That bill was signed into law by Governor Patterson on May 28. Both the State and City laws hold the manufacturers responsible for paying for collection and recycling of old electronic products.
Representative Mike Thompson yesterday introduced a resolution that calls on Congress to craft a plan to deal with its own e-waste, only using recyclers certified to the new e-Stewards Standard – the highest in the industry.
“In choosing to work only with certified e-Stewards, Congress is saying they want to be sure their old computers and other electronic products don’t end up being exported to developing nations, or sent to prison recycling shops,” said Barbara Kyle, National Coordinator of the Electronics TakeBack Coalition. “We are very pleased to see Congress lead by example in solving the problem of global e-waste dumping.”
State and Local Governments call on Industry to Withdraw New York City E-waste Lawsuit
Government officials from across the country today called on the electronics industry to withdraw its lawsuit against the New York City e-waste recycling law, calling the lawsuit a challenge by the electronics industry to the rights of states and cities to pass producer responsibility laws that hold manufacturers accountable for their products.
New TV Recycling Report Card shows many TV companies still have no recycling programs, even though Digital TV Conversion Contributes to E-Waste
With the digital TV conversion occurring on Friday June 12, there will be more ewaste that needs to be disposed of properly. Many TV manufacturers, including a market leader, still offer no electronics recycling program, according to the Electronics TakeBack Coalition, who published its TV Company Recycling Report Card today.
“With the upcoming digital TV conversion looming before us, many people don’t know where to take their old TVs, said Electronics TakeBack Coalition National Coordinator Barbara Kyle. “There are some responsible manufactures and retailers who offer takeback programs, but unfortunately not all – including market leader Vizio.”
A bill introduced today by Rep. Gene Green concerning the electronic waste export problem will still allow exports of toxic waste to continue, according to the Electronics TakeBack Coalition, a national coalition of environmental and consumer groups. The bill, HR 2595, is sponsored by Rep. Green, as well as Rep. Mary Bono-Mack, and Rep. Mike Thompson.
Indiana became the first state to pass a major electronics recycling law in 2009 as Governor Mitch Daniels signed HB 1589 into law yesterday, making Indiana the nineteenth state to pass a law creating a statewide e-waste recycling program. Eighteen of these 19 states, including Indiana, have adopted “producer takeback” laws, requiring the manufacturers to pay for the collection and recycling of old products.
Environmentalists and consumer groups applauded Dell for its announcement today of a policy that prohibits the export of toxic electronic waste to any developing country.
The Electronics TakeBack Coalition, which promotes responsible recycling and green design in the electronics industry, lauded Dell’s e-waste policy as the highest standard in the industry.
Environmentalists and consumer groups applauded Hewlett Packard (HP) for its announcement today of a policy that prohibits the export of toxic electronic waste from developed countries, like the U.S., to any developing country.