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SYS-CON MEDIA Authors: Lori MacVittie, Liz McMillan, Carmen Gonzalez, Srinivasan Sundara Rajan, Blue Box Blog

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Recycle Across America Joins R2 Recycling Leader Program

Recycle Across America (RAA) has been announced by SERI as the newest addition to the R2 Recycling Leader program, which is designed to support efforts by companies and organizations to advance the responsible reuse and recycling of used electronics.

As part of its participation in the R2 Leader program, RAA will work with SERI to develop education and outreach materials covering electronics repair and recycling, as well as provide guidance on strategies for outreach and communication. RAA brings a commitment to communicating the value of recycling, and is widely recognized for its standardized labeling initiative for recycling bins to help the public recycle properly.

RAA joins a coalition of ten R2 Recycling Leader partners, including: DIRECTV, Goodwill Industries International, Greeneye Partners, Keep America Beautiful, Microsoft, Panasonic, Sony America, SourceAmerica, Wistron Corporation and Xerox.

Participating partners make a commitment to support sustainable electronics recycling, as well as consider R2 certification when choosing a recycling partner. R2 Leaders also take a leadership role in a project to advance responsible reuse and/or recycling around the world, such as funding pilot projects for responsible recycling in developing countries, or creating new programs for electronics collection, refurbishment or recycling.

“SERI is very excited that RAA will lend its experience in consumer education and outreach to support electronics recycling,” said SERI Program Director Henry Leineweber. “Creating engagement on electronics recycling issues encourages responsible recycling. RAA will be a great partner for the R2 Leader program and we are looking forward to working with them."

“We’re excited to work with SERI/R2; they clearly understand the importance of standardization,” said Mitch Hedlund, Executive Director of RAA. “Without standardization there can be serious issues with recycling in general, and even more so with electronics – as we’ve all seen the images of dismantling e-waste in areas around the world where there are no standards – and certainly with concerns around data protection. Due to the complex elements within electronics and the ever-increasing amount of technology in all of our lives, there is no greater urgency than making sure these items get recycled properly.”

“Recycling has been identified as the #1 action we can do for the environment, the economy and our future on this planet,” added Hedlund, “but only if we recycle right. This is true for cans, bottles, paper, cardboard, electronics and everything that has an after-life. But in order for this to happen, the general public needs to be able to have consistent messaging to make it easier to recycle properly anywhere, hence the introduction of the standardized label initiative and the ‘Let’s Recycle Right’ campaign. Without standardized and society-wide messaging, recycling is either not done or not done properly and therefore manufacturers don’t have access to usable recycled materials. In the end, they continue to deplete natural finite resources. That’s what makes this relationship with SERI so synergistic.”

The R2 Standard was created in 2008 through a multi-stakeholder process that included the U.S. EPA, electronics manufacturers, recycling companies, non-profit organizations, and other groups. Electronics recycling and refurbishment facilities certified to the R2 Standard adhere to best-practices in worker health and safety, environmental protection, chain-of-custody reporting, data security, and other areas. Worldwide, 600 facilities are certified to the R2 Standard in 17 countries.

About SERI

SERI, formerly R2 Solutions, is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization (application pending) that undertakes educational and other activities to advance responsible electronics reuse and recycling around the world. It is the housing body for the R2 Standard. More information can be found at www.sustainableelectronics.org.

About Recycle Across America (RAA) is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization, which has developed the first and only society-wide standardized labeling system for recycling bins to help eliminate the public confusion surrounding recycling. RAA and the standardized labels have been identified as a world-changing solution by Ashoka Global Innovators for the Public and is being referred to as “one of the most important environmental fixes taking root today.” This initiative represents what can be accomplished when simple solutions are implemented making it easier for society to act on its good intentions. For more information, visit www.recycleacrossamerica.org or contact [email protected].

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