Computers and TVs
Banned from North Carolina Landfills
Session Law 2010-67, which went into effect on July 1, bans TVs and computer equipment from North Carolina's landfills. Computer equipment includes laptops, desktops, monitors, keyboards, mice, printers and scanners. Recycling will reclaim usable metals and materials, while preventing potential toxins from entering the natural environment. The process also creates jobs in the electronics recycling industry in North Carolina.
The provisions ofS.L. 2010-67 do several things:
- The law prohibits the disposal of TVs, computers and associated electronic devices in any landfill in North Carolina.
- The law defines the responsibilities of manufacturers, recyclers and government agencies.
- The law establishes guidelines and specific disposal procedures in all counties for electronic devices.
- The law sets guidelines for electronic recycling businesses in North Carolina.
- The law establishes an electronics management fund to reimburse local government agencies for collecting electronic devices for recycling.
How do we go about recycling our old computers and televisions?
Most of the state's counties and a number of large municipalities have already implemented public electronic collection programs. The vast majority of citizens in North Carolina have access to local government electronics collection services that accept the banned items along with a wide variety of other electronic devices, such as DVD players, gaming devices, VCRs and cell phones. Your local government may have permanent locations with posted collection hours, while others conduct periodic collection days that may take place at various, non-centralized locations.
The law is specific regarding requirements and documentation for county agencies. Those participating government entities must contract with a “certified” electronic recycler. Currently, only the“Responsible Recycler” (R2) and“e-Steward Standard” are accepted certifications.
In some cases, electronics retailers will accept items for recycling. Several large retail chains have programs in place to accept electronics for recycling, including Best Buy and Radio Shack. It is best to ask your local retail outlet before loading anything into your car to make sure they will accept your items.
Certain charitable organizations may be able to recycle, refurbish, reuse or resell your electronic devices. There are minimum requirements for functionality, so check with the organization in advance to find out if your items can be accepted. In the case of computers, charitable agencies may also require you to remove hard drives or other devices where sensitive or personal information is stored.
A comprehensive list of recycling options can be found at www.p2pays.org/electronics/. For details on Session Law 2010-67, please visit portal.ncdenr.org/web/wm/sw/electronics, or contact Scott Mouw with the Division of Environmental Assistance and Outreach at firstname.lastname@example.org or (919) 715-6512. You can also contact Ellen Lorscheider with the Division of Waste Management at email@example.com or (919) 508-8499.