March 2005

National e-waste bill proposed

Two House members have introduced a national electronics recycling bill aimed a preventing obsolete computer equipment and other electronics from going into the nation´s landfills.

Reps. Mike Thompson, D.-California, and Louise Slaughter, D-New York, introduced the National Computer Recycling Act on January 26, 2005.

The bill would direct the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency to develop a grant program to encourage local governments, individuals and organizations to start e-waste recycling programs. The EPA would conduct a study that recommends solutions for the ongoing problem, and the agency would impose a fee of as much as $10 on new computers to fund the grant program, although manufacturers and retailers with existing recycling programs would be exempt.

Without a national law, states are creating a patchwork of policies that make it difficult for manufacturers and retailers to adhere to the laws in all 50 states, the sponsors said.

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