Nevada Recycles: Modeling an Effective Take-Back Program
By: Amber Scorah, Energy IQ
Q&A with Jasmine Vittori, Nevada Division of Environmental Protection
The State of Nevada is actively redirecting large volumes of e-waste away from landfills towards more responsible means of disposal. Energy IQ spoke with Jasmine Vittori, Northern Nevada Recycling Coordinator with the Nevada Division of Environmental Protection’s Nevada Recycles program, to have a look at their model and get some practical insights into how manufacturers and recyclers can use the Nevada Recycles model for the promotion of responsible electronic waste management to increase economic development and reduce e-waste in landfills.
Energy IQ: Can you tell us a little about Nevada’s approach and strategy for constructing effective e-waste legislation, and the history of e-cycling in the State of Nevada?
Jasmine Vittori: Originally, Nevada Assembly Bill 426 aimed to set up an e-waste program in the State of Nevada. This bill was later amended to require the Nevada Division of Environmental Protection (NDEP) only to conduct an interim study of Nevada and surrounding states’ e-waste and recycling programs. Results of this study were published in January, 2011, and included feedback from various hearings and stakeholders.
Energy IQ: What were the findings of the 2011 Recycling and Waste Reduction report?
Jasmine Vittori: E-waste reuse and recycling has merit on many levels, including protection of human health and the environment, and should be addressed because of its growing volume and prevalence, but deciding upon the best approach is a complex issue that required additional evaluation. Through the e-waste study required by AB 426, it was found that approximately 95% of Nevada’s population currently has access to existing e-waste services through a combination of local drop-off facilities, special collection events, and mail-in take-back programs. Some e-waste reuse and recycling services are free-of-charge, while others charge per unit or by the pound fees.
The 2011 Recycling and Waste Reduction report recommended that Nevada’s voluntary e-waste program be continued, with enhancements including: enhancement of public awareness of e-waste disposal risks and benefits and availability of reuse/recycling programs, and increased environmental preferable purchasing practices.
Energy IQ: What current e-cycling efforts are taking place throughout Northern Nevada?
Jasmine Vittori: E-cycling in Northern Nevada currently works through a combination of local drop-off facilities, special collection events, and mail-in take-back programs. There are numerous small businesses and non-profit organizations located throughout the region that accept, sort, and recycle e-waste.
Energy IQ: What methods have you found to be effective in increasing e-cycling rates?
Jasmine Vittori: One of the most successful methods we have found in Nevada for increasing e-cycling rates are the e-waste collection events that are put on throughout the year. In past events doors have been closed before 12:00pm at what would have been an all-day-event because collection capacity had been met. This strongly indicates that there is not only a large need for e-cycling in the state, but also that there is an equally large interest in e-cycling in Nevada.
Jasmine Vittori will be a speaker at the upcoming IQPC e-Waste Management Summit in Las Vegas, November 14 to 16, 2011. For more information or to register visit www.ewastemgmtsummit.com or email email@example.com.