Leaders in Canada’s consumer electronics and information technology industries have joined forces to find environmentally friendly solutions for the growing problem of what to do with electronics equipment at the end of its useful life through the newly created Electronics Product Stewardship Canada (EPS Canada).
The founding members of EPS Canada include: Apple Canada Inc., Canon Canada Inc., Dell Canada, Hewlett Packard (Canada) Co., IBM Canada Ltd., and Sony of Canada Ltd. EPS Canada, which is a joint effort of the Information Technology Association of Canada and Electro-Federation Canada, is currently consulting with governments, consumers and other stakeholders across Canada to design appropriate program for the safe reuse and recycling of equipment. The organization aims to launch its first end-of-life program in 2004.
Critics say that the organization attempts to deflect costs of collection and waste processing on consumers, instead of providing extended producer responsibility to manage product waste. (See "Computer Crash" in the October/November edition of the magazine.)
Meanwhile, 15 private electronics firms representing 21 facilities throughout North America announced that they have joined forces with environmental organizations and agreed to uphold the world’s most rigorous environmental and safety criteria for the dismantling and recycling of electronics wastes.
As of February 25, 2003, the signatory companies have all agreed to: prevent hazardous e-waste from going to municipal incinerators or landfills, prevent the export of hazardous e-waste to developing countries, and to use free market rather than prison labour to dismantle or recycle e-waste.
The criteria are all contained in the landmark "Electronic Recycler’s Pledge of True Stewardship" that was developed in conjunction with members of the Computer TakeBack Campaign and the Silicon Valley Toxics Coalition. Maxus Technology Inc. of Calgary, Alberta is one of the companies involved in this group.
For further information contact David Betts at 613-238-4822, ext. 224 or Jim Puckett at 206-652-5555