E-Waste Recycling Bill Floated in Senate

by | Sep 30, 2009

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hp-recycling2As more and more states institute electronics recycling programs, a U.S. Senator has proposed federal legislation that would standardize the recycling of electronics devices, reports Circuits Assembly.

The move comes against a backdrop of electronics companies fighting various state programs that establish industry funded recycling efforts. Connecticut is just the latest state to do so.

The bill, dubbed the “Electronic Device Recycling and Research and Development Act,” also would address the use of hazardous materials in the production of electronics. It was introduced by Sen. Amy Klobuchar (D-Minn.).

Electronics retailer Best Buy has come out in support of the legislation.

The bill would seek a collaborative effort from manufacturers, retailers, recyclers and research institutes.

It would create grants to promote research for ways to recycle, reuse and refurbish electronics, as well as conduct life-cycle analyses.

The bill also calls for the National Academy of Science to investigate barriers to increasing electronics recycling, and look for opportunities to boost the practice. The academy also would be charged with investigating methods to reduce the use of hazardous materials in the manufacture of electronics.

The bill also calls for the EPA to provide grants to develop university curriculum that would advance students and professionals in the electronics recycling field.

In April, electronics recyclers and refurbishers recommended changes to manufacturers on how they design electronic products and the information they need to improve processing of used devices.

Meanwhile, a report from the Green Electronics Council (GEC), “Closing the Loop: Product Design to Enhance Reuse/Recycling Value,” identified several research priorities to increase the cost effectiveness and resource efficiency of e-scrap recycling.

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