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Dell, Sprint, Sony Support Federal CE Recycling Initiative

7/20/2011 02:26:17 PM Eastern

Austin, Texas - Dell, Sprint and
Sony have pledged to support a U.S.-based electronics recycling market as part
of larger Obama Administration plan for used CE. 

The recycling strategy, developed by
the U.S. Environmental Production Agency (EPA), calls for the use of certified
recyclers and to increase the safe and effective management and handling of
used electronics.

As a first step in this effort, Dell
and Sprint CEOs Michael Dell and Dan Hesse, along with representatives from
Sony Electronics, signed a voluntary commitment with EPA Administrator Lisa Jackson
today to improve the safe management of used electronics.

The EPA said its collaboration
with industry aims to encourage businesses and consumers to recycle their
electronics with certified recyclers, and for electronic recyclers to become
certified.

The recycling effort is part of the
Obama Administration's larger "National Strategy for Electronics Stewardship," also
announced today, which White House officials described as a plan for
responsible electronic design, purchasing, management and recycling that will
promote the burgeoning electronics recycling market and jobs of the future here
at home. 

The administration's strategy also
commits the federal government to take specific actions that will encourage the
more environmentally friendly design of electronic products, promote recycling
of used or discarded electronics, and advance a domestic market for electronics
recycling that will protect public health and create jobs.

General Services Administrator
Martha Johnson and White House Council on Environmental Quality Chair Nancy
Sutley announced the strategy at the EPA signing event, which took place at a
certified electronics recycling center here.

As outlined in the strategy report,
the federal government will:

  • promote the development of more efficient and
    sustainable electronic products;
  • direct federal agencies to buy, use, reuse and
    recycle their electronics responsibly;
  • support recycling options and systems for
    American consumers; and
  • strengthen America's role in the international
    electronics stewardship arena. 

Under the strategy, the U.S. General
Services Administration (GSA) will remove products that do not comply with
comprehensive and robust energy efficiency or environmental performance
standards -- from its information technology purchase contracts used by federal
agencies, and will ensure that all electronics used by the federal government
are reused or recycled properly. 

In addition, EPA and GSA will
promote development of new environmental performance standards for categories
of electronic products not covered by current standards.  Several federal
agencies will work together to identify methods for tracking used electronics in
federal agencies to move toward reuse and recycling.

The EPA estimates that Americans
generate almost 2.5 million tons of used electronics annually, which are made
from valuable resources such as precious metals and rare earth materials, as
well as plastic and glass.

"A robust electronics recycling
industry in America would create new opportunities to efficiently and
profitably address a growing pollution threat," said the EPA's Jackson. "The
participation of industry leaders like Dell, Sprint and Sony is absolutely
essential to this effort, and will help ensure that the work of the federal
government -- the largest electronics consumer around -- is protecting our
people from pollution at the same time we support savings and job creation
through e-cycling and re-use of valuable materials."

"Our goal at Dell is to deliver the
highest quality and most efficient products to our customers with the least
environmental impact," Michael Dell said. "Last fiscal year we diverted more
than 150 million pounds of end-of-life electronics globally from landfills, and
we are well on our way to meeting our goal of recycling 1 billion pounds by
2014. We encourage everyone in our industry to commit to easier, more
responsible recycling as we all work to protect our planet."

Said Hesse, "To be recognized by the EPA for responsible e-waste recycling is
an honor for Sprint and a chance to build on our industry-first Electronics
Stewardship Policy. Our current policy and today's commitment with the EPA
highlights our goal to handle electronic waste holistically -- from product
design to disposal -- and is another proof point to our broader commitment to
sustainability innovation."

Added Sony's Mark Small, corporate
environment, safety and health VP,
"At Sony, any product we make and put our name on, we will take back and
recycle in the most responsible manner. ‘We Make It, We Take It Back' has been
Sony's policy since 1995.  This partnership -- in coordination with the
EPA and other stakeholders -- will help us reach our ‘Road to Zero' goal,
Sony's vision of zero waste and zero environmental impact throughout the
complete life cycle of all our products and related activities."

For more information on the EPA and
industry collaboration, visit www.epa.gov/electronicsstrategy.
For more information on GSA's electronic stewardship goals and promoting
federal agencies' purchasing environmentally preferable products, visit www.gsa.gov/portal/content/187053.