EIA Pushes Federal TV Recycling Law

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The Electronics Industries Alliance, an organization that represents some 1,300 member companies, is pitching a national approach to electronics recycling that would distinguish TV's from computer monitors and put the recycling of TV sets in the hands of a third party organization funded by a fee to consumers.

In May, the alliance came up with a framework for federal legislation for requiring recycling by citing "a patchwork" of state laws-- including pending ones in Texas and Connecticut-- that would bring the total of eight different state laws. With more states potentially on the way, the EIA says that patchwork poses a "challenge" for manufacturers.

In addition to setting up a standardized recycling plan, the framework would include using vendors with "environmentally-sound" practices, a government procurement preference for "environmentally-preferable" products.

A fee would be assessed on TV's at the point of purchase to help cover the cost of recycling "legacy products" by the third party, though it would eventually be phased out once a "significant number of legacy sets" are recovered.

The issue could become a big one as viewers trade in their analog sets for DTVs in the run-up to the end of virtually all analog broadcast TV transmissions, scheduled for February 2007.

“Congress can do right by the environment, consumers and the electronics industry by adopting a national recycling plan,” says EIA President Flanigan.  “We’ll continue to work with Senator Ron Wyden, Representatives Mike Thompson, Mary Bono, Louise Slaughter, Zach Wamp, Albert Wynn and others to do everything possible to make that happen.”

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