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Furthering Industry Sustainability and Green Initiatives

Consumer Electronics and Being Green


We all have a stake in finding solutions for climate change and diminishing natural resources. Our global economy is also a global eco-system, and it's never been more important to share the responsibility of preserving our planet.

That's why the Consumer Electronics Association (CEA) is proud to highlight the CEA 2013 Sustainability Report illustrating the industry's progress in pushing green initiatives. The report also provides transparency on the consumer electronics industry's sustainability practices.

While the report illustrates creative strides toward the goal of sustainability, there is still much more to be done. Learn more about the industry's recycling and energy efficiency efforts and how you can get involved.

Below you can find numerous recent studies and initiatives on sustainability:
 

  • CEA, along with the Institute of Scrap Recycling Industries Inc. (ISRI) and InnoCentive announced a second CRT Challenge on April 1, 2013 to identify financially viable, environmentally-conscious proposals for using recycled cathode ray tube (CRT) glass.
    • Dr. Thomas Engelhardt was the winner of the CRT Challenge. His solution is to use the leaded CRT glass in the vitrification of nuclear waste. Vitrification is a mature technology that has been used for more than 40 years. It involves the melting of waste material with glass-forming additives so that the final glassy product immobilizes the waste material, trapping the lead and the other elements in the glass. The Environmental Protection Agency has declared vitrification to be the “best demonstrated available technology” for heavy metals and high-level radioactive waste. 
  • Sustainable Consumer Electronics Technology Demo- Albany, NY, June 12, 2013.


GreenerGadgets.org

CEA operates GreenerGadgets.org - an online resource for consumers that highlights the industry trend toward "greener gadgets" -- smaller, smarter, more energy efficient devices that can do more than ever before. Tech-savvy shoppers now have more eco-friendly options and this resource has valuable information about how to buy green electronics, use them efficiently and recycle them at the end of their useful life.

The site also features a powerful energy use calculator with the most up-to-date products and energy use figures to help consumers better understand their energy usage and a recycling locator tool. When it comes to end-of-life electronics many people are concerned with what happens after they drop off their products. The recycling locator database includes industry programs, which use strict standards, and third-party certified recyclers, so rest assured your device will be safely recycled!


STAFF CONTACTS

WALTER ALCORN
Vice President, Environmental Affairs and Sustainability
703-907-7765 
walcorn@CE.org

DOUG JOHNSON
Vice President, Technology Policy
703-907-7686
djohnson@CE.org

ALLISON SCHUMACHER
Sr. Manager, Environmental Policy and Sustainability
703-907-7631
aschumacher@CE.org

GREEN POLICIES AND INITIATIVES

 
  • March 2015  CEA is tracking more than 150 environmental bills in 29 state legislatures covering a range of CE recycling, energy efficiency, chemical restrictions and other environmental issues. Such legislative activity is up as compared to previous years with major legislative battles underway in Illinois, Minnesota, Washington and Oregon and battles brewing in a dozen other states. CEA currently has active contract lobbyists in 19 states to help make sure our industry views are heard and considered. 
 
  • Feburary 2015  As of the end of February, CEA is tracking more than 100 environmental bills in state legislatures around the country including 21 e-waste, 11 Extended Producer Responsibility (EPR), 45 toxic chemicals, five packaging, 12 kill switch, two “right to repair” and nine energy efficiency bills, among others. There are several more e-waste bills yet to drop that are expected in states such as Michigan, Minnesota, New Jersey and New York, and we anticipate more EPR bills in states such as California regarding batteries and packaging and Connecticut regarding batteries. In mid-February, CEA successfully had two amendments accepted to Hawaii’s e-waste legislation SB 1049, which was passed by the Senate Committee on Energy and the Environment, and the same committee voted to indefinitely defer EPR legislation SB 180.
 
  • September 12, 2014 The California Department of Toxic Substances Control issued a three-year Priority Product Work Plan for its Safer Consumer Products program.  DTSC identified seven product categories that the agency will evaluate to identify product-chemical combinations to be added to the Priority products list during the subsequent three years.  The categories include: beauty/personal care/hygiene; building products; cleaning products; fishing and angling equipment; clothing; household/office furniture/furnishings and office machinery (consumable products). CEA will monitor developments with the office machinery (consumable products) category, which includes consumable and refillable components of office machinery (i.e., printers, photocopiers, credit card terminals) such as printer inks, specialty paper and toner cartridges.