Disposal of old televisions and computers is tough in rural Pennsylvania — it is illegal to put “e-Waste” out with the trash, and drop-off facilities and collection events are few and far between, so illegal dumping prevails. State groups are now pushing for changes to the Covered Device Recycling Act of 2010, which Keep Pennsylvania Beautiful calls “a flawed law (which) started out with good intentions” because it prohibited electronics from going in the garbage without ensuring sufficient alternatives to properly dispose of such devices.

The Act established free manufacturer recycling programs for residents and a disposal ban for all covered electronic devices — all covered devices would be recycled at no cost — and, landfills and other solid waste disposal facilities could no longer accept these items or their components. “Unfortunately, the impact of Act 108 has created a supply and demand imbalance that makes it cost-prohibitive for electronics recycling vendors to operate in Pennsylvania,” Keep Pennsylvania Beautiful states online.

According to a letter from the Electronics Recyclers Association of PA (ERAP), “The Pennsylvania E-Scrap Recycling Industry is shrinking, not growing” because there is not enough financial support from electronics manufacturers to cover collection, transportation, and recycling.

As a result, ERAP says electronics processors are closing sites or opting out of service across Pennsylvania, including more than 20 regional recycling sites closing in western Pennsylvania. Electronic devices contain valuable and recoverable materials such as aluminum, copper, gold, silver, plastics and ferrous metals, so there is value in recycling them. Additionally, knowing that everyday electronics contain lead, cadmium and mercury that are hazardous waste, the law’s intent was to keep these materials out of the landfill.

It was supposed to be a win for the economy and a win for the environment, but it has presented other challenges instead, according to Keep PA Beautiful President Shannon Reiter.

Read the full story at http://www.bradfordera.com/news/disposing-old-electronics-tough-under-pa-law/article_cd027514-0e74-11e6-93d8-074ddb271845.html.