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State gives $600,000 to 83 counties and cities to aid electronics recycling

Raleigh

The state Department of Environmental Quality’s Division of Waste Management recently awarded $600,000 to 83 county and city governments to support local electronics management programs, which provide residents with opportunities to recycle electronics like televisions and computer equipment.

A full list of the 83 government recipients can be found at: http://deq.nc.gov/about/divisions/waste-management/solid-waste-section/electronics-management.

“Recycling electronic equipment reduces waste and protects water quality by keeping toxic materials like mercury and lead out of landfills,” said DEQ Secretary Michael Regan. “In addition, recycling electronics recovers valuable raw materials that can be used to make new products that diversify the market, supporting North Carolina jobs and sustainable economic development.”

The state’s Electronics Management Program was created through legislation in 2010 to expand public and private infrastructure to manage collection and recycling of specific electronic devices. It directs electronics manufacturers, retailers, consumers, and local governments to collaborate for the responsible recycling and reuse of electronic equipment. The program requires computer equipment and television manufacturers who sell in the state to offer ‘take-back’ programs to residents and pay an annual registration fee.

The Electronics Management Fund consists of computer and television manufacturers’ registration and annual fees, which are used to support approved electronics recycling programs within North Carolina counties. Generally, costs associated with local collection systems include managing drop-off sites, and the consolidation and transport of materials. 

Since 2010, local government and manufacturer programs have diverted more than 300 million pounds of electronics from solid waste landfills. Last year, local recycling programs collected almost 80 percent of all consumer-generated televisions and computer equipment recycled by residents in this state, which is 35.7 million pounds of consumer electronic waste kept out of landfills statewide. The Division of Waste Management does not collect data on electronics recycled by businesses.

For more information about the program or a list of electronics collection sites by county, go to: https://deq.nc.gov/about/divisions/waste-management/electronics.

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