May 12 - Dell Takes Strong Stance Against Exporting E-waste

Dell/ Electronics TakeBack Coalition just had a press conference today announcing Dell is banning the export of non-working electronics to developing countries as part of its global policy on responsible electronics disposal. Dell is the first major computer manufacturer to do so, and exceeds the requirements of the Basel Convention, which bans the export of certain electronic waste based on its material or chemical composition.

By expanding its definition of electronic waste to include all non-working parts or devices, irrespective of material composition, Dell's new policy will help prevent the unauthorized dumping of electronic waste in developing countries by requiring that equipment be tested and certified as "working" prior to export.

These additions to the company’s disposition policy is consistent with California's E-waste Recycling law which pays recyclers for covered electronic devices collected, but only if they can demonstrate to the state that the devices were properly dismantled and recycled consistent with California law. State law specifically prohibits the payment to recyclers for devices that are exported for dismantling to ‘non-OECD’ (Developing) countries. This market-based incentive system is the driving force behind California's high collection rate- in 2008, Californians collected more than 214 million lbs of covered electronic waste for recycling (televisions, computer monitors, laptops, portable DVD players), far more than any other state both in total and on a per capita basis.

Dell’s long-standing commitment to responsibly manage sensitive electronic waste through final disposition includes:

  • All exports and imports of electronic waste handled by Dell and its authorized environmental partners will comply with existing international waste trade agreements and legal requirements;
  • Dell does not permit electronic waste to be exported from developed to developing (non-OECD/EU) countries, either directly or through intermediaries;
  • No prison or child labor will be used in the disposal of electronic waste; and
  • Every reasonable effort will be made to control all electronic wastes and prevent it from entering landfills or incinerators.

* The policy also reinforces that electronic waste processed by Dell’s disposition chain is tracked and documented throughout the entire chain of custody until final disposition, and that Dell will audit its recycling, refurbishment and processing vendors at least annually to ensure they conform with Dell’s electronics disposition policy and environmental partner performance standards.

According to Barbara Kyle, National Coordinator, Electronics TakeBack Coalition:

"Too many companies are still exporting used, non-working electronic equipment to developing countries, supposedly for repairs. We applaud Dell for drawing a clear line by saying they will not export non-working electronics to developing countries - not for recycling, and not for repairs. Dell’s policy on e-waste export is now the strongest in the industry and demonstrates Dell’s leadership as a global environmental citizen."

Read the article.

Related Links : - Dell’s electronics disposition policy