EPA guidelines encourage recycling
Electronics recyclers have a new
guide on how to run safe and environmentally
protective recycling operations.
The Environmental Protection Agency
(EPA), as part of a group of recycling
stakeholders, developed the “Responsible
Recycling (R2) Practices for Use
in Accredited Certification Programs
for Electronics Recyclers” to promote
better environmental, worker safety,
and public health practices for electronics
“There should be no doubt that choosing
to reuse or recycle used electronics
is the right choice for our environment,”
said Susan Parker Bodine, assistant
administrator for EPA’s Office of
Solid Waste and Emergency Response.
“These voluntary guidelines will
help assure Americans that their
used electronics will be recycled
safely and responsibly.”
The R2 guide lists 13 principles
to help electronics recyclers ensure
their material is handled safely
and legally in the United States
and foreign countries. It calls on
recyclers to establish a management
system for environmental and worker
safety; develop a policy that promotes
reuse and material recovery over
landfill or incineration; and use
practices that reduce exposures or
emissions during recycling operations.
The principles also call for recyclers
to use diligence to assure appropriate
management of materials throughout
the recycling chain, including materials
that are exported to foreign countries.
The workgroup that developed the
guidelines represent federal and
state governments, electronics manufacturers
and recyclers, and trade associations.
The workgroup will now focus on establishing
a certification process, which will
allow consumers easily to recognize
responsible recyclers in the marketplace.
For information about the guidelines,