Just before the new year, I wrote about some ways folks can safely and responsibly get rid of their used electronic equipment, such as TVs, computers, and MP3 players. As I discussed, one of the only options for doing so in many areas of the country where comprehensive e-waste laws are not yet in effect is going to a voluntary collection event, usually sponsored by a municipal solid waste authority or a non-profit organization.
Earlier this month, the non-profit Lower East Side Ecology Center (LESEC) sponsored its fifth annual After the Holidays E-Waste Collection Event in New York City. More than 500 people showed up at this year’s event, which brought in over 35,000 pounds of e-waste for recycling. This public service announcement produced for Science Friday and posted on green.tv features the LESEC event and provides a nice quick sketch of why e-cycling is so important.
Events like these demonstrate the tremendous demand that exists for easy and reliable opportunities to safely get rid of our unwanted electronics. That is why NRDC has been working for several years to enact progressive, comprehensive e-cycling laws across the country.
On January 30th, the New York City Council is poised to enact the nation’s first comprehensive municipal electronic recycling law, which NRDC had a major hand in drafting and advocating aggressively to get passed. I’ll write more after the 30th, when our next major efforts will be directed at convincing Mayor Bloomberg to sign the bill into law and then moving to Albany to push for a statewide e-waste law. It suffices to say for now that successful passage of the New York City law, which would require manufacturers to conduct events like LESEC’s and/or provide other convenient ways to return used electronics for recycling, would provide a very satisfying cap to the month of January!