From: "crra_alert" <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Date: Fri, 26 Sep 2003 00:10:24 -0000
GOVERNOR DAVIS SIGNS MAJOR "E-WASTE" BILL CREATING NATIONS' FIRST
ELECTRONIC WASTE RECYCLING PROGRAM 09/25/2003
Governor Gray Davis has signed the electronics waste recycling act of
2003, the nation's first comprehensive electronics recycling law. The
legislation creates a system for the safe and convenient collection
and recycling of hazardous electronic products with the elimination
of existing electronic waste stockpiles by the end of 2007.
"California has led the technology revolution and we will lead the way
to safely managing computers and other electronic devices at the end
of their life," said Governor Davis. "This is a low-cost, consumer-
friendly solution to the expensive electronic product recycling
options currently available."
In California, more than 10,000 computers and TVs become obsolete
daily. Recycling programs run by some electronics manufacturers and
local governments typically charge consumers from $10 to $35 to take
back an obsolete computer monitor or television. A study by the
California Integrated Waste Management Board (IWMB) estimates that
Californians have some six million of these products stored at home.
SB 20 by Senator Byron Sher (D-Palo Alto) creates the Electronic Waste
Recycling Act of 2003, which establishes a comprehensive program to
safely manage cathode ray tubes (CRTs, or picture tubes). CRTs are
used in computer monitors and TVs, flat panel screens and other video
displays that contain hazardous components.
"The 'e-waste' problem has been created by rapid changes in the
electronics industry, consumer demand for more powerful personal
computers and a lack of convenient recycling opportunities," Senator
Sher said. "SB 20 will put California at the front of national
efforts to solve this burgeoning problem."
The act covers specific electronic products that use CRTs, flat panel
screens, or any other video display device larger than four inches, if
the California Environmental Protection Agency's (Cal/EPA) Department
of Toxic Substances Control (DTSC) determines that they are
hazardous. DTSC has determined that CRTs, which typically contain
five to seven pounds of lead that protects users from radiation
emitted by the products during their operation, is hazardous.
Starting July 1, 2004, California retailers will begin collecting an
electronic waste recycling fee on covered products. The fee will be:
* $6 on products with video display screens of at least four inches
but less than 15 inches;
* $8 for screens 15 inches to smaller than 35 inches; and
* $10 for those with screens 35 inches or larger.
a.. $6 on products with video display screens of at least four inches
but less than 15 inches;
b.. $8 for screens 15 inches to smaller than 35 inches; and
c.. $10 for those with screens 35 inches or larger.
The fees also apply to mail order and Internet purchases. The IWMB can
impose administrative civil penalties of up to $2,500 per violation
and seek penalties of up to $5,000 per violation of each sale of a
specific electronic device for which a recycling fee has not been
Revenues will be deposited in a new Electronic Waste Recovery and
Recycling Account and fund payments by the IWMB to authorized
electronic waste collectors and recyclers, to cover the net costs for
operating free and convenient collections programs for the public.
The Board, in collaboration with DTSC, is required to adjust the fees
every two years to ensure that sufficient revenues are available to
fund the collection, consolidation and recycling and to administer
the program. Similarly, the recycling payment schedule will be
adjusted every two years to adequately cover the net costs
After July 1, 2004, electronic product manufacturers must demonstrate
compliance with provisions of the Electronic Waste Recycling Act.
Starting July 1, 2005, electronic product manufacturers must report
annually to the Board their approximate sales of covered products for
the preceding year, the amount of hazardous materials used in
manufacturing their products, what they have done to reduce this and
efforts undertaken to design more recyclable electronic products.
Overseas export of electronic wastes has created problems, notably in
China, where environmental controls and worker health and safety
protections have been weak. Under the new law, anyone proposing to
export covered electronic wastes to a foreign country will have to
notify DTSC, at least 60 days in advance, of the destination,
contents and volumes of covered electronic waste to be shipped. They
will also be responsible for demonstrating that the importation is
legal in the destination country, will meet all applicable laws of
the importing country and that the waste will be handled at its
destination in accordance with rules, standards, and requirements
adopted by the Organization of Economic Co-operation and Development
for the environmentally sound management of electronic waste.
Under current hazardous waste law, DTSC can enforce the new
electronics waste recycling statute and seek fines of up to $25,000 a
day for violations.
"I look forward to working with industry leaders such as IBM, Hewlett
Packard, Sony and others to halt the increasing 'e-waste' problem,"
Governor Davis concluded.
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