To Mark Earth Day, Green Plug Endorses E-Steward Program As Effective Response to E-Waste Crisis

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Urges Consumers to Dispose of Obsolete Power Supplies Through Participating e-Steward Centers

Lending our enthusiastic support to the e-Steward movement is such a fitting way to mark Earth Day

With Earth Day just two weeks away, Green Plug (http://www.greenplug.us), provider of the world's first open systems universal power interface, today endorsed the emerging e-Stewards Certification program and called on consumers to dispose of eWaste responsibly by using recyclers who have qualified for the e-Stewards program, at http://www.e-stewards.org/local_estewards.html.

More than 2.5 billion electronic devices -- including laptops, printers, speakers, routers, modems, cell phones, entertainment devices, power tools, cameras and other portable electronic gear -- require a power source that converts 65V - 240V wall power to device-specific DC power. Manufacturing separate interfaces is both costly and inconvenient to the consumer, and is a significant source of solid waste. Every year, in the U.S. alone, hundreds of millions of discarded, incompatible power supplies end up in landfills.

The Basel Action Network (http://www.ban.org) and the Electronics TakeBack Coalition has defined standards for globally responsible recycling and has qualified 33 electronics recyclers in 81 locations in the United States and Canada to manage this problematic waste stream in a way that keeps toxic wastes in developed countries, and does not allow them to end up in China, India, or other developing countries. The current program respects international definitions and laws pertaining to hazardous waste, among other things, and tracks them to final disposition.

According to Sarah Westervelt of the Basel Action Network, "The Green Plug technology is a highly welcomed, innovative tool to reduce the amount of electronic waste generated around the world, in the form of discarded power adapters and chargers. Meanwhile, other types of electronic waste should be sent to e-Stewards to make sure we're not exporting harm to others in poor communities."

The Basel Action Network recently announced the development of an accredited, independently audited certification program, which will provide rigorous on-site certification to the "gold standard" created by the environmental community in conjunction with some of the best electronics processors in the industry, as well as experts in worker protection, data security, and certification programs. Funding for the development of this program has come from 14 companies, called "e-Steward Founders," and includes Boliden AB, California Electronic Asset Recovery, Cascade Asset Management, ECS Refining, Electronic Recyclers International, GreenCitizen, Hesstech, Metech, Redemtech, RELectronics, the Surplus Exchange, Total Reclaim, Waste Management Recycle America, and WeRecycle!.

The development of the e-Stewards certification program is well under way, and will provide responsible companies with a tool to differentiate their practices from others. It will forbid the dumping of toxic e-waste in developing countries, local landfills and incinerators, the use of prison labor to process e-waste, and the unauthorized release of private data contained in discarded computers. It will also have strong worker protection requirements for managing this problematic waste stream. The certification program is being piloted in 2009 and will be launched fully in early 2010.

"Lending our enthusiastic support to the e-Steward movement is such a fitting way to mark Earth Day," said Frank Paniagua, Jr., Green Plug CEO and founder. "The e-waste problem is rapidly becoming an eco catastrophe, which is why we're joining with other environmental advocates to urge consumers to make use of these recyclers for all of their e-waste disposal needs. It's especially important to be vigilant in recycling, since some who claim to be 'green' are anything but. Look for the e-Stewards logo on the recycler's website or check the full list on the e-Stewards site. It's the gold standard now, and soon it will be an accredited certified program with the highest levels of accountability."

Green Plug is the first green technology company to apply two-way digital communication to convert a universal power source to a device's specific power requirements. Stylish DC power hubs enabled with Green Plug's Greentalkā„¢ digital protocol are able to simultaneously power multiple devices, each with its own specific voltage and power requirements. Green Plug technology minimizes e-waste by enabling consumers to keep their chargers for use with future devices after their current devices have become obsolete.

Across the spectrum - from consumer electronics companies to public utilities, from environmental organizations to national governments - momentum is building toward an open, green standard for universal power. To capture and share these sentiments, Green Plug recently unveiled an extension to its website, at http://www.greenplug.us/supporters.php. The initiative complements the ongoing, consumer-driven "I Want My Green Plug" campaign. Beyond the ability to vote for CE devices to "Green Plug-enable," http://iwantmygreenplug.com includes social tools for sharing with friends, embedding a widget on a blog or web site, bookmarking it on social sites, joining IWMGP groups on social networks, and following the Green Plug blog (http://blog.greenplug.us) for updates.

About Green Plug:
Green Plug is the first developer of digital technology enabling real‐time collaboration between electronic devices and their power sources, allowing manufacturers to standardize on one universal power connector and eliminate environmental waste. Consumer electronics, residential and commercial builders, power tools and power supply manufacturers license Green Plug's embeddable power supply technology to provide universal and safe connections, promote environmentally friendly reuse, make their products more affordable, and generate customer loyalty. For the company's thoughts on universal power for consumer electronics, please visit http://blog.greenplug.us. Green Plug, headquartered in San Ramon, Calif., is privately held.

Media contact for Green Plug:
Ken Greenberg
Edge Communications, Inc.
818-990-5001
ken (at) edgecommunicationsinc (dot) com

Media contacts for BAN:
Sarah Westervelt
206-652-5555
swestervelt (at) ban (dot) org

Jim Puckett
206-652-5555
jpuckett (at) ban (dot) org

For more information about:
The e-Stewards Initiative: http://www.e-Stewards.org
Global e-waste dumping: http://www.ban.org
The Electronics TakeBack Coalition: http://www.computertakeback.com

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Ken Greenberg
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