It’s the feel-good Earth Day story that the Consumer Electronics industry has been looking for. According to a report from the Consumer Electronics Association (CEA), the industry set a new record in 2013 with the responsible recycling of 620 million pounds of electronics in the United States, which was more than double the total of three years ago.
Those results were recorded in the Third Annual Report of the eCycling Leadership Initiative, released by the CEA. The Initiative is a CE industry effort, led by CEA, to increase collaboration among CE manufacturers, retailers, collectors, recyclers, non-governmental organizations and governments at all levels.
“We want to make recycling electronics as easy as purchasing electronics,” said Gary Shapiro, president and CEO, CEA. “Electronics recycling is a national issue, and CEA continues to work toward a national solution to replace the complicated patchwork of rules that varies from state to state.”
The 2013 U.S. ecycling total is an increase of 35 million pounds over the 2012 level (585 million pounds) and more than twice the amount recycled in 2010 (300 million pounds). The report also reveals:
Apple, Best Buy, Dell, and DIRECTV set themselves apart as Initiative Leaders, each recycling more than 125 percent of the consumer hardware recycling goals set by CEA for 2013.
By the end of last year, more than 99 percent recycling by eCycling Leadership Initiative participants was conducted in third-party certified recycling facilities.
More than 8,000 responsible recycling locations are now available to consumers throughout the continental U.S., Alaska, Hawaii and Puerto Rico.
The eCycling Leadership Initiative includes a stretch goal to increase the amount of electronics recycled responsibly to one billion pounds annually by 2016, also known as the Billion Pound Challenge. Additionally, the initiative plans to grow the number of collection opportunities available to consumers, improve consumer awareness of available ecycling collection sites and provide transparent metrics on ecycling efforts.
“The eCycling Leadership Initiative participants and CEA have made great progress educating consumers about how and where to responsibly recycle their electronics,” said Walter Alcorn, vice president of environmental affairs and industry sustainability, CEA. “Through easy-to-use online tools and consumer-focused campaigns more consumers are now aware of recycling opportunities available in their communities.”
CEA continues to enhance consumer education efforts about ecycling and energy efficiency through the website GreenerGadgets.org. The site includes tips to help consumers live green, buy green, and recycle responsibly. By entering a zip code, consumers can locate the closest responsible recycling opportunity sponsored by the CE industry and/or third party-certified recyclers.
CEA also produced and distributed public service announcements for radio and television on the importance of electronics recycling. To view and listen go to CE.org/ecycle.