Currently in the U.S., 25 states have passed legislation requiring statewide e-waste recycling. Several more states have recently introduced legislation. In Minnesota, electronics recycling legislation was signed into law in May 2007. This legislation targeted the collection and recycling of video display devices sold to households/consumers, including televisions, computer monitors, laptops, computers, printers, fax machines, keyboards and DVD players. The manufacturers of these devices must register each year and pay a fee to the state, collect and recycle electronic devices from households/consumers in Minnesota and file a report detailing the results of their collections for each program year. Here’s some advice from the Electronics TakeBack Coalition about getting get rid of electronic equipment that you no longer use while protecting the environment at the same time: 1. Do not throw your old electronics in the trash. There are toxins that could leach into your soil and ground water if your electronic devices end up in a landfill. 2. Donate for reuse if possible. If your device is still functioning, check with a local school or charity to see if they could give it a second life. 3. Find a responsible recycler, an e-Steward, in your area. Certified e-Stewards recyclers adhere to a strict standard of responsible recycling and reuse with the goal to protect human health and the global environment.
- Certified e-Steward: Jack’s Family Recycling Center in Alexandria, Evansville and Wheaton, MN. Jack’s became the state’s first certified e-Steward Recycler in April 2011.
- Recommended by e-Steward (certification in progress): Materials Processing Corporation in Mendota Heights, MN
- Recommended by e-Steward (certification in progress): Waste Management Recycle America in Minneapolis
- CRT-containing devices, like televisions and computer monitors
- Flat-panel video displays typically contain one or more mercury-containing lamps
- Rechargeable batteries and battery packs
- Fluorescent bulbs and tubes