Executive Briefings

States' Differing Recycling Laws Are Problematic for Best Buy

Right now 20 states have laws governing electronics retailing, and they're all different. Following all these rules gets confusing for Best Buy, which runs recycling programs in all 50 states. The solution is a federal bill that would bring some uniformity to the system.

Legislation is necessary to achieve widespread electronics recycling, since the cost of collecting an item, transporting it and breaking it apart often exceeds how much a company can get selling its parts. A refrigerator often pays for itself because it's easier to disassemble and the steel from its body has value on the market.

But electronics can be another story. A laptop, for instance, requires far more labor to pull apart. The federal government could encourage manufacturers to design their products to make recycling easier down the road.

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Right now 20 states have laws governing electronics retailing, and they're all different. Following all these rules gets confusing for Best Buy, which runs recycling programs in all 50 states. The solution is a federal bill that would bring some uniformity to the system.

Legislation is necessary to achieve widespread electronics recycling, since the cost of collecting an item, transporting it and breaking it apart often exceeds how much a company can get selling its parts. A refrigerator often pays for itself because it's easier to disassemble and the steel from its body has value on the market.

But electronics can be another story. A laptop, for instance, requires far more labor to pull apart. The federal government could encourage manufacturers to design their products to make recycling easier down the road.

Read Full Article