Member Profiles

Guest Blog – Good Year for R2

The Global Product Stewardship Council periodically invites thought leaders on product stewardship and producer responsibility to contribute guest blogs. Our guest blogger for this post is John Lingelbach, Executive Director of SERI.

It has been a big year for the R2 program. Much has been accomplished – especially for a program in only its fourth year and which employs just four people. Over the past year, one of the most significant accomplishments has been the organizational transition from R2 Solutions to SERI.

We made this change so we could engage in a broader set of activities that are in line with our mission of promoting safe and sustainable electronics reuse and recycling throughout the world – particularly in Asia, Latin America, India, and Africa, where access to safe repair and recycling facilities has not kept pace with the rapidly expanding use of electronics.

One of the ways that we can expedite the work that needs to be done is to work collaboratively with others who share SERI’s goals. To that end, we established the R2 Leader program. In just a few short months, over a dozen corporations and organizations have joined. As part of the program each R2 Leader has identified steps they will take to promote safe and sustainable electronics reuse and recycling somewhere in the world. It is encouraging to see the energy and resources going into some of these efforts. For example, DirecTV is providing training in a number of Latin American countries. Other Leaders, such as Xerox and Goodwill, have taken steps to support and expand the collection of used electronics. A number of other projects in early stages of development will improve the electronics reuse and recycling landscape in various regions of the world.

On another front, we have just completed the transition from the original R2:2008 Standard to R2:2013. The new version of the Standard has a deep emphasis on quality and consistency, with new environmental health and safety planning, record keeping and documentation review requirements. Nearly 90% of all R2:2008 certified facilities upgraded to R2:2013.

Perhaps the most important SERI initiative this year is the development and initial implementation of SERI’s R2 Quality Program. Nothing is more critical to SERI’s work than the integrity of the R2 program, and nothing presents a greater set of challenges. Promoting consistency within the auditing community, and a solid understanding among facilities getting certified, is essential. Identifying and removing any bad actors is even more important. SERI is absolutely committed to doing everything in its means to maintain and enhance the overall quality of the R2 program.

2014 was a pivotal and transformative year for SERI and for the R2 Standard. Spring boarding from the momentum of the past year, SERI is well positioned to make considerable progress in advancing the cause of safe and sustainable repair and recycling around the world in the upcoming year as well as years to come.

The views expressed do not necessarily reflect those of the Global Product Stewardship Council.

John Lingelbach is the Executive Director of SERI – Sustainable Electronics Recycling International, formerly known as R2 Solutions. SERI is the nonprofit organization that administers and educates people about the R2 Standard and Certification Program. Mr. Lingelbach has served as Executive Director, as well as on the organization’s Board of Directors, since its inception, and previously in these capacities for R2 Solutions since its inception in 2010. From 2006 to 2009, he managed the United States Environmental Protection Agency’s development of the R2 Standard. Mr. Lingelbach is an attorney from the United States who has focused throughout his professional career on matters relating to innovations in environmental law and policy. Mr. Lingelbach received his Juris Doctorate from the University of Virginia School of law.

 

GlobalPSC Member – Community Recycling Network

The Community Recycling Network of Australia (CRN) is the peak body for social enterprise community recycling in Australia. The CRN was established in 2010 with the following Mission and Objectives:

Mission:

  • Community Recycling - save resources (reducing waste), creating local jobs, strengthening communities

Objectives:

  • Provide an effective voice and focal point for community recycing in Australia
  • Sustain a network able to provide support, advice, guidance and mentoring to local organisations
  • Increase the profitability and/or scale of member enterprises
  • Influence the political environment in support of community reuse / recycling
  • Provide local jobs for those facing barriers to work
  • Work towards a shared zero waste future

Criteria for membership include organisations or individuals committed to:

  • Reducing waste
  • Creating jobs
  • Strengthening communities
  • Social enterprise

eWasteNZ Preliminary Report and Stakeholder Summary Available

The first stakeholder workshop for the #eWasteNZ project was held 19 September 2014 in Auckland. Participants included 45 diverse stakeholders, plus the e-waste project team and representatives from the New Zealand Ministry for Environment (MfE). A high level summary of the workshop discussions and outcomes is now available.

Prior to the workshop, participating stakeholders had been sent the project’s Preliminary Report for background information and questions to be considered. During the workshop the project team summarised key issues and reviewed the questions from the Preliminary Report.

The next stage of the project will be to collate responses to the Preliminary Report previously issued to all stakeholders. These responses and the outcomes of Workshop 1 will help to inform the Draft Report. Comments on the Preliminary Report are due by Friday 14 November.

The #eWasteNZ project is being delivered through a partnership of companies, led and managed by SLR Consulting, with MS2 as technical lead and supported by Synergine and Equilibrium. MS2 is a Foundation Member of the GlobalPSC and Director Russ Martin also serves as our CEO.

For further project details, email ewasteNZ@slrconsulting.com.

GlobalPSC Member – Centre for Sustainable Materials Research and Technology (SMaRT@UNSW)

The Centre for Sustainable Materials Research and Technology (SMaRT@UNSW) brings together researchers from the discipline areas of Science, Engineering and design to work with industry on the development of innovative, sustainable materials and manufacturing processes.

Achieving sustainability targets set by industry has created a need for commercially relevant and globally significant R&D. The SMaRT Centre works with industry partners to develop the fundamental and applied science underlying sustainable materials and technologies.

SMaRT brings together the distinctive research capabilities of UNSW’s academics and a track record of delivering research and technology suitable for rapid implementation.

Goals of the Centre

The overall aim of the Centre is to develop innovative, sustainable materials and processes through world-class research collaboration with industry and research partners, with strong emphasis on environmental and economic benefits.

  • To lead scientific and engineering advances in sustainability of materials and associated technologies and to strengthen links with local and international institutions and industries for research into developing sustainable materials and associated technologies through ARC Industrial Transformation Research Hub – Transforming Waste Directly in Cost-effective Green Manufacturing, ARC Linkage Grants, ARC Discovery Grants, Industry Funds, and visiting researchers
  • To deliver the science that will underpin the reduction of the environmental impact, and enhance community benefits associated with materials-related industries and technologies by developing novel and innovative materials and processes
  • To facilitate rapid transfer of technology by addressing the scientific and engineering barriers to technologies for transforming industry
  • To collaborate with industries to apply the research strengths of UNSW to enhance sustainable development

 

British Columbia Recycles its 15 Billionth Beverage Container at Encorp Pacific’s 20th Anniversary Event

British Columbia – The Hon. Mary Polak, M.L.A., Minister of Environment was recently on hand at the Queensborough Landing Return-It Depot in New Westminster to recycle British Columbia’s 15 billionth beverage container.

(L-R: British Columbia Minister of Environment Mary Polak with Scott Fraser, President & CEO of Encorp Pacific, recycling the province’s 15 billionth beverage container at the Queensborough Landing Return-It Depot in New Westminster.)

“This is a British Columbia success story about what can happen when we all work together for the greater good of the environment,” says Mary Polak, Minister of Environment. “A big congratulations to Encorp Pacific for the progress they’ve made, and to all British Columbians who have helped reach this milestone.”

“British Columbia is a North American leader when it comes to creating industry-led extended producer programs and Encorp Pacific is helping lead the way,” continued Minister Polak. “What a remarkable achievement for our province where 15 billion beverage containers have now been recycled.”

This event marked Encorp Pacific’s 20th anniversary as a not-for-profit product stewardship corporation with beverage container management as its core business.

“The success of our system for recycling beverage containers proves that millions of small acts can add up to a big win for the environment,” says Scott Fraser, President and CEO of Encorp Pacific. “Even with this extensive system though, British Columbia would not have one of the highest recycling rates in North America without consumers making the decision to do the right thing for the environment. British Columbians deserve a pat on the back for making a difference.”

British Columbia has one of the highest beverage container recycling rates in North America. Last year alone 80.1 percent of all beverage containers sold in British Columbia were returned and recycled. Almost 1 billion used beverage containers were returned for deposit and processed into new products. That includes 356 million aluminum cans, 340 million plastic bottles, 198 million glass bottles and 69 million drink boxes and cartons.

In 2013, Encorp Pacific collected over 90,000 metric tons of recyclable material, an equivalent weight of 60,000 mid-sized cars. Encorp Pacific’s data shows that recycling beverage containers in British Columbia saves enough energy to power 42,000 homes for a year, and reduces 94,700 tonnes of CO2 equivalent from being released into the atmosphere.

Encorp Pacific is the environmental stewardship agency that runs the Return-Itprogram. Its extensive network of over 170 independently owned Return-It depots across the province is the heart of the system, collecting 92 percent of all the beverage containers recycled in BC. Encorp ensures that deposits are refunded to consumers when containers registered in the system are returned to Return-It depots, major grocery retailers and liquor stores. Encorp also ensures that after collecting and sorting the empty beverage containers, they are transported to processors and then sold to end markets so they can be recycled into a variety of new products.

UNIDO and Dell Cooperate on E-waste Solutions in Africa, Asia and Latin America

The United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO) and Dell (a GlobalPSC Corporate Member) have signed an agreement to cooperate on identifying and implementing a sustainable solution model for e-waste management for developing countries in Africa, Asia and Latin America. Developing countries are expected to account for the majority of discarded electronics by 2016, and twice that of developed regions by 2030.

The memorandum of understanding signed by UNIDO’s Director General LI Yong and Dell Inc.’s Executive Director of Sustainability David Lear (pictured below with Jean Cox-Kearns, Director of Compliance – Dell Global Takeback), commits the two organizations to work together for a five-year period, with an option to extend the partnership.

“Enabling recycling infrastructure in developing countries has significant benefits for the environment and local community, and facilitates Dell with the recovery of valuable resources currently being discarded. Together with UNIDO we will work to establish or up-scale facilities to operate environmentally sound management practices that meet international standards for e-waste recycling and further powers the circular economy for IT,” said Lear.

Lear added, “We are going to continue to support governments in developing effective regulations and policies for e-waste management. Since policy development is a multi-stage process, Dell and UNIDO will support governments in the dialogue and dissemination activities to accompany the various stages of policy development, and this will include organizing and participating in consultation meetings with major stakeholder groups representing industry associations, civil society groups, formal and informal sector collectors, recyclers and representative associations.”

Through the collaboration, UNIDO and Dell aim to create awareness, build capacity, and engage in knowledge sharing and policy advocacy with regard to sustainable e-waste management; to support the creation of an operational and economically viable collection network, and dismantling and recycling facilities, to process e-waste in developing countries in a safe and environmentally sound way; and to support the development of local recycling infrastructure, contributing to the industrial development of these countries and creating sustainable, green economies.

UNIDO has an established e-waste program that addresses the full life cycle of ICT equipment by properly dismantling and recycling it once the equipment has become obsolete. The program aims to foster the development of an environmentally sound e-waste recycling industry in developing countries.

With the active support of 35 National Cleaner Production Centres, UNIDO focuses on promoting an environmental service industry in developing countries; preparing national e-waste assessment reports; establishing partnerships with national and international institutions from the public and private sector; and facilitating the establishment of local and regional e-waste dismantling and recycling facilities.

Dell began integrating sustainability features into its products and processes nearly 30 years ago with designs that were upgradable, serviceable and recyclable because it was good for business, customers, and the environment. Dell is building on this commitment through its recently launched Legacy of Good plan outlining its vision for 2020. As part of this plan, Dell has a goal to eliminate two billion pounds of used electronics by 2020, which will be achieved through Dell’s recycling programs for homes and businesses in 78 countries.

Want to know more about the GlobalPSC and our members?

 

The Global Product Stewardship Council is an independent, not-for-profit forum for product stewardship development and an online resource for information on product stewardship policies and programs across the world.

The GlobalPSC has over 60 members based in 12 countries and operating worldwide.

Members span producers, product recovery organisations, NGOs and governments at federal, state/provincial and local levels.

Learn more about the GlobalPSC, our members and our activities by checking out our latest brochure and member profiles.

 

GlobalPSC Corporate Member – Dell

Dell was founded in 1984 by Michael Dell from his dorm room at the University of Texas in Austin, and today he is the longest-tenured executive to lead a company in the computer industry. Dell is a premier provider of products and services worldwide that enable customers to build their information technology and Internet infrastructures. Dell offers a broad range of products in the following categories: desktop computer systems, servers and networking products, mobility products, software and peripherals and services.

Dell Inc. is currently headquartered in Round Rock, Texas, United States of America. Dell Inc. operates worldwide and its subsidiaries develop, design, manufacture, market and sell computers and services, software and peripherals to customers worldwide. The company sells its technology to a variety of customers – consumers, public customers, large enterprises and small- and medium-sized businesses. In 2014, Dell launched a new closed-loop process where plastics for new product manufacturing are sourced by waste electronics collected from customers. By keeping the plastics within the ‘closed-loop,’ Dell puts them back to work, fueling the circular economy for IT. By doing this Dell helps to drive a “circular economy”.

Dell was honored with the 2015 Accenture Award for “Circular Economy Pioneer” at the Circular Awards during the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland. The award recognizes established organizations demonstrating existing business innovation that supports a circular economy, which aims to decouple economic growth from the use of natural resources and ecosystems by using resources more effectively.

 

GlobalPSC Member – WasteMINZ

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

WasteMINZ is the largest representative body of the waste and resource recovery sector in New Zealand. Formed in 1989, it is a membership-based organisation with over 1,000 members – from small operators through to councils and large companies. WasteMINZ is the authoritative voice on waste and resource recovery in New Zealand and seeks to achieve ongoing and positive development of the industry through strengthening relationships, facilitating collaboration, knowledge sharing and championing the implementation of best practice standards.

WasteMINZ works closely and collaboratively with industry partners, the Ministry for the Environment, other government agencies, and local government on advancing waste and resource recovery issues. They also gather feedback on topical issues and key areas of interest, which are incorporated into their continuing professional development programme which includes the WasteMINZ annual conference, workshops and seminars.

WasteMINZ also has relationships with a number of other similar international organisations and is New Zealand’s national member of the International Solid Waste Association (ISWA).

Facebook: www.facebook.com/WasteMINZ

Twitter: @WasteMINZ

 

Consultation Webinar on Draft Stewardship Plan for BC Packaging and Printed Paper

 

 

 

StewardChoice Enterprises Inc. (a subsidiary of GlobalPSC Corporate Member Reclay StewardEdge) has released its draft stewardship plan for packaging and printed paper in British Columbia. Public consultation includes a webcast scheduled for Tuesday, 26 August 2014 at 10:30 a.m. PDT. Register here by 12 p.m. on Monday, 25 August to receive login details.

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Email: info@globalpsc.net