November 21, 2005

BC prepares to add e-waste, tires to recycling regulation

VICTORIA, BC-The British Columbia government is preparing to add electronics waste (e-waste) to the materials covered by the provincial recycling regulation. Inclusion of e-waste under the regulation would require the development of an extended producer responsibility (EPR) program for this category. E-waste products proposed for inclusion are computers, monitors, desktop printers and TVs. Eventually, stereo equipment, cell phones and small appliances may be added. The province is also planning to move the existing government-led tire recycling program to industry-led product stewardship by adding scrap tires to the recycling regulation. Two intentions papers outlining the proposals to add schedules for e-waste and tires to the regulation were released for comment, and it is expected that the e-waste schedule will be added by the end of 2006 and the tire schedule early in 2006. Stewardship programs for e-waste would be in operation by mid-2007 and for tires by mid-to late 2006. BC already has successful programs in place for paint, medicines, pesticides, beverage containers and oil. Disposal of e-waste is becoming a growing concern, with a recent study by the Greater Vancouver Regional District having found that per-capita generation has quadrupled in recent years, with an estimated 19,500 tonnes of e-waste now going into landfills annually.

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