100 Million Pounds e-Waste Collected

Since the State of Wisconsin launched an e-Waste recycling program in 2010, Wisconsin has collected more than 100 million pounds of e-Waste. Associated Press says that the E-Cycle Wisconsin program bans the illegal disposal of e-Waste, including printers, computers, TVs and cell phones in landfills and incinerators. This law forces manufacturers of certain e-products to be responsible for collecting and recycling e-Waste from Wisconsin households and schools. The US Environmental Protection Agency reports that nearly half of the states now have laws on the disposal and recycling of electronics. Besides, some other states plan to make similar laws.

According to the Consumer Electronics Association, the average American household typically owns about 24 electronic products.

The State of Wisconsin has more than 400 collection sites. First Choice Computer Recycling in Chippewa Valley, one of the busiest sites, collects between 2 and 3 million pounds of e-Waste every year. From July 2011 to June 2013, the third year of the program, registered collectors took in 39.1 million pounds of electronics, or 6.8 pounds per Wisconsin resident. According to a report by E-Cycle in December 2012, Wisconsin had one of the highest rates of e-Waste collected in the United States.

E-Cycle Wisconsin also reported on the difficulties of the program. Many Wisconsin residents are unaware of the law, and some are still disposing e-Waste illegally. Moreover, some residents’ awareness of electronics recycling remains low, or they probably don’t want to pay the fees to existing collectors. E-Cycle Wisconsin says that electronics collection has been exceeding manufacturers’ targets by several million pounds and they are cutting the cost per pound of e-Waste paid to recyclers.

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