EPA is recognizing Staples Inc., based in Framingham, Massachusetts for its work to reduce electronic waste and increase its reuse and recycling. The company was among eight winners of EPA’s 2019 Sustainable Materials Management Electronics Challenge Awards, which recognize these companies for their efforts to protect the environment. Together these winners kept 194,500 tons of electronics out of landfills by sending them to certified recyclers.

“Staples is one of the electronics industry’s leaders in life cycle management,” said Dennis Deziel, regional administrator of EPA’s New England office. “The environmental benefits associated with keeping electronics out of landfills and recycling them for use in new products are enormous. EPA is proud to recognize the role Staples has played in protecting the environment.”

Electronics are made from materials that may pose a risk to the public’s health and the environment if they are not properly managed. Staples was recognized for its in-store recycling program that includes paying for unwanted laptops and phones that still have value; accepting all electronics for recycling; offering rewards for old ink cartridges and recycling rechargeable batteries. All of this year’s winners will be recognized in January at a ceremony at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas, Nev., which will showcase the innovative work of these awardees. The other winners of this top-level Gold Tier Award were Dell; LG Electronics USA; Samsung Electronics; Sony Electronics; Sprint; TCL North America, VIZIO and Xerox.

With an ever-increasing supply of new electronic gadgets, EPA’s latest data show that Americans generated 2.84 million tons of waste from consumer electronics goods in 2017 and that a third of that was recycled. By using less material in the manufacturing process, reusing items more, refurbishing used products, extending the life of products, and recycling of electronics, the quantity of waste is reduced. It also creates green jobs, increases the value of American exports, and supports a vibrant American recycling and refurbishing industry.

EPA launched the SMM Electronics Challenge in 2012 to encourage electronics manufacturers, brand owners, and retailers to send all the used electronics they collect to certified electronics refurbishers and recyclers. The challenge’s goals are to increase collection of electronic equipment for reuse and recycling; to promote data transparency and accountability publicly available data and to reduce the environmental impacts of electronic products.

For more information, visit https://www.epa.gov/recycle/electronics-donation-and-recycling or https://www.epa.gov/smm-electronics.