The National Electronics Recycling Infrastructure Clearinghouse (NERIC) today released "A Study of the State-by-State E-Waste Patchwork," identifying a projected $25 million in recurring annual costs that will be spent by consumers, state governments and industry through the existing e-waste recycling programs in California, Maine, Maryland and Washington.
The study is a first-ever effort to identify and quantify the existing and potential economic effects of the ever-expanding patchwork of state-level electronics recycling requirements on industry, government and consumers. It analyzes the effect of legislation already passed and enacted in the four mandatory state programs to date – California, Maine, Maryland, and Washington, and projects costs for the future.
Drawing from estimates provided by principal public and private sector entities in state electronics recycling programs, the study identifies "dead weight" costs that would not be present with the introduction and implementation of a national electronics recycling program. Recurring dead weight costs of the four existing state-legislated programs are estimated at $25 million per year. At the present implementation rate of one new state mandated program per year, recurring dead weight costs are expected to increase substantially during the coming years. The study projects recurring dead weight costs associated with a future 20-state “mega-patchwork” of differing state requirements to be $125 million per year.
The study has also made the Consumer Electronics Association to call for new efforts to develop a national e-waste recycling solution.
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