NC E-Waste Recycling Paid by Manufacturers

by | Jul 6, 2010

North Carolina has a new electronic waste bill that would require manufacturers to pay for recycling old gadgets, according to a Bloomberg report. The bill, which is currently awaiting the signature of the state’s governor, would provide for curbside pickup of electronics waste, alongside the state’s existing system for recycling cans and bottles. Manufacturers will be responsible for either funding the program directly or paying municipalities to run the program for them.

The state already has an e-waste law on the books that requires electronics manufacturers to create a recycling plan, pay a fee to local governments, and register with the N.C. Department of Environment and Natural Resources. The law would ban the disposal of televisions and computers beginning in January 2011.

The new law would push the disposal ban back from January to July. It will allow manufacturers to choose from a selection of recycling plans in which they can participate, each with a different fee structure. The more extensive recycling programs would charge companies a lower fee, according to the report. Bloomberg reported that a company with a mail-back program and one waste collection site would be charged $15,000, while a company with collection sites in 50 counties would only be charged $2,500 a year.

The report cited a recent study by he N.C. Division of Pollution Prevention and Environmental Assistance, which found that North Carolina currently has 70,000 tons of electronic waste that has yet to be properly disposed.

A spokesperson for Dell said the computer maker is supportive of the new law.

A federal judge recently dismissed a suit that had been brought by the electronics industry against New York City’s new e-waste recycling initiative. Connecticut, meanwhile, has launched its own electronics recycling program. A U.N. report recently found that e-waste recycling initiatives are still lagging, despite reports that manufacturers are stepping up involvement in recycling initiatives.

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