Residents of New York in the United States will now be able to recycle their old cell phones and other electrical goods free of charge. A new law, the Electronic Recycling and Reuse Act goes into effect today, according to the Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) which not only sets in motion the biggest e-waste program in the whole of the United States, but also forces manufacturers to recycle at least some of their own equipment all over the state to meet a predetermined goal.
“This is a huge win for the environment and consumers, who will now be able to recycle electronic waste at no cost,” says Joe Martens, the Department of Environmental Conservation Commissioner. “Manufacturers of TVs, computers, printers, copiers and other electronic products are stepping up to help New York meet our ambitious recycling goals and lower costs for local governments.”
All manufacturers who sell electrical goods in New York will have to register with the Department of Environmental Conservation and create a collection program for their e-waste that is free of charge for all customers, including individuals, schools, government offices and small businesses.
“This new program will prevent millions of pounds of electronic waste from entering New York’s limited landfills,” says the Chair of the Assembly Environmental Conservation Committee, Assemblyman Bob Sweeney. “The rapid evolution of technology has meant these products seemingly become obsolete almost as soon as they are manufactured and because they contain toxic substances like lead, mercury, chromium and cadmium they can damage our food and water supplies.”