North America’s most comprehensive rechargeable battery recycling program earns e-Stewards qualification
ATLANTA, August 11, 2009 Call2Recycle’s most successful rechargeable battery recycling program, today announces that it has become the first program of its kind to be recognized as an e-Steward by the Basel Action Network (BAN). This voluntary recognition affirms that Call2Recycle has completed BAN’s initial audit and qualification requirements and is now in line to become one of the first independently audited, accredited and certified electronics recyclers in North America. The e-Stewards designation is given for electronics and battery recyclers that uphold the strictest standards for environmental safety and social responsibility.
BAN, a toxic trade and corporate responsibility watchdog, is named for the Basel Convention, an international treaty created to prevent the dumping of toxic waste from rich to poorer nations. In 1995 the Basel Convention passed a decision to prohibit the export of hazardous waste to developing countries. As a global organization, BAN works to prevent the global dumping of toxic e-waste that has become all too common today, and promotes responsible recycling here in North America. Call2Recycle will join a select group of e-Stewards recyclers whose collection and recycling process have been recognized by BAN, assuring that no toxic e-waste collected by these organizations is dumped in landfills or incinerators, exported to developing countries or sent to prison labor operations.
“We believe that Call2Recycle meets and exceeds the highest environmental standards in North America, but in an era of ‘greenwashing’ and misleading claims, we also believe in the necessity of third-party certification of our performance,” said Carl Smith, Chief Executive Officer, Rechargeable Battery Recycling Corporation (RBRC). “We are proud that our recycling program has been recognized as an e-Steward solution for rechargeable batteries. Consumers can be assured that the rechargeable batteries they recycle with Call2Recycle are handled in a way that is best for the environment and workers in all corners of the world.”
According to BAN, only 12.5 percent of discarded electronics products in the U.S. were collected for recycling in 2005, of which an estimated 80 percent was then exported to developing countries for processing. To generate support for the mounting crisis, BAN continually reports on the negative effect that the mismanagement and mishandling of e-waste has on the environment and society, most recently teaming with PBS’s “Frontline” and CBS’s “60 Minutes” news magazines to expose the deadly impacts of toxic electronics recycling operations in China and in Africa. BAN also uses its resources to create positive solutions, such as e-Stewards, and reward industry organizations that have taken steps to ensure the soundness of their waste management programs at all points in the process.
“We are thrilled to recognize Call2Recycle as an e-Steward,” said BAN Executive Director Jim Puckett. “That means they have already passed our initial in-house audit program with flying colors and have agreed to be audited and certified by an accredited certifying body next year to an even more comprehensive standard. Call2Recycle has stepped forward to be among the most conscientious companies in an industry in need of such leadership.”
All of the rechargeable batteries collected through the program are recycled at various processing locations in North America and none of the broken-down material makes its way into landfills. Cell phones collected through the program are recycled or refurbished and resold when possible with proceeds benefiting select charities. The transport and recycling of used rechargeable batteries and cellphones collected through Call2Recycle are in accordance with the U.S. Department of Transportation, Transportation Canada, and the Universal Waste Rule.
Call2Recycle offers consumers, businesses, communities and retailers a free and convenient way to recycle the used rechargeable batteries found in cordless electronic products, such as cellphones, laptop computers, digital cameras, PDAs, cordless power tools, two-way radios, mp3 players and camcorders. To learn more about Call2Recycle and find local collection sites, visit www.call2recycle.org, Wikipedia or Facebook.
About BAN’s e-Steward Initiative
The Basel Action Network’s e-Steward Certification is the continent’s first independently audited and accredited electronic waste recycler certification program. It forbids the dumping of toxic e-waste in developing countries, local landfills and incinerators; the use of prison labor to process e-waste; and the unauthorized release of private data contained in discarded computers. For more information, please visit www.e-Steward.org.
Call2Recycle is the industry’s first and only product stewardship program for rechargeable batteries. The nonprofit program is administered by the Rechargeable Battery Recycling Corporation (RBRC), a public service organization dedicated to rechargeable battery recycling. There are more than 30,000 Call2Recycle drop-off locations throughout the U.S. and Canada. More than 175 manufacturers and marketers of portable rechargeable batteries and products show their commitment to conserve natural resources and prevent rechargeable batteries from entering the solid waste stream by funding the Call2Recycle program. In pursuit of its mission, Call2Recycle also collects old cellphones, which are either recycled or refurbished and resold when possible with a portion of the proceeds benefiting select charities. For more information, call 877-2-RECYCLE or visit www.call2recycle.org.