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[GreenYes] TakeBack Campaign letter to Staples
February 15, 2002

Via E-mail

Ms. Sharyn Frankel
Staples, Inc.

Dear Ms. Frankel:

        On behalf of the national Computer TakeBack Campaign, we are writing about Staplesí planned used computer collection events scheduled for this holiday weekend, February 17
and 18. While we applaud the apparent intent to address the growing piles of electronic waste, we call on you to address some potential concerns that may have serious repercussions for Staples. We ask that you respond to our concerns with full disclosure or take immediate corrective action to ensure these events are held to appropriately high environmental standards.
        Typically, used computer collection events claim that the collected equipment will be processed or recycled in an environmentally responsible manner, as Staplesí recent press release so claims. However, as we have learned  and obtain more evidence of every day  the materials collected from some of these events are not properly recycled and may even be exported to foreign countries for manual disassembly under horrific conditions with no environmental safeguards.
        Consumers are glad for the collection service and fully anticipate that their participation will help avoid environmental problems. Therefore, we ask that you provide us with the name of the firm or firms which have been retained to recycle or dispose of the equipment that is not suitable for re-use, to outline the environmental safeguards your contractors will employ, including disposal methods, and to ensure that no collected materials will be shipped overseas for processing under substandard conditions.
        Further, we ask that you provide all consumers participating in this program the same information and assurances. Only in this way can the public be guaranteed that their effort to remedy the problem of electronic waste is carried through in an environmentally superior manner.
        Your attention to this matter and prompt response are greatly appreciated.

Very truly yours,

David Wood              Ted Smith               Michael Bender
GRRN                    SVTC                    Mercury Policy Project
608-270-0940            408-287-6707            802-223-9000

David Wood, Program Director
GrassRoots Recycling Network
5610 Dorsett Drive
Madison  WI  53711-3402
608-347-7043 (cell)
If you are not for Zero Waste, how much waste are you for?

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