Covanta Energy Joins CAER, Industry Coalition Backing Toxic E-Waste Export Limits, As Bipartisan Support Continues to Grow on Capitol Hill

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Bill would create tens of thousands of jobs, promote investment in U.S. industry

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Despite a political climate where bipartisanship is rare, the bill has attracted 18 co-sponsors from both sides of the aisle, including 11 Republicans and 7 Democrats.

The Coalition For American Electronics Recycling (CAER) today announced that Covanta Energy, a leading global owner and operator of energy-from-waste projects, has joined the industry drive for federal legislation to restrict export of toxic electronic waste (e-waste) from the U.S. and spur growth of the domestic recycling industry. Despite a political climate where bipartisanship is rare, the legislation is attracting growing support from both sides of the aisle in the U.S. House of Representatives, including 11 Republicans and eight Democrats.

With the addition of Covanta Energy, CAER now includes 56 U.S. companies involved in all aspects of the domestic electronics recycling and disposition industry, with more than 100 operations in 32 states as well as the District of Columbia. CAER members support passage of the Responsible Electronics Recycling Act (HR 2284/SB1270) because it will create jobs, protect America's security interests and enhance sustainability.

“Covanta Energy is proud to support the passage of a bill that ensures the proper and sustainable recycling of e-waste,” said Gordon Burgoyne, director of e-waste business development for ECOvanta, Covanta Energy’s new e-waste recycling business unit. “This important legislation seeks to mitigate the ecological and human health problems caused by the unmonitored exportation of electronic waste and is in perfect sync with ECOvanta’s mission to provide transparent and sustainable e-waste recycling services with an eye toward conserving our world’s limited natural resources.”

“We are pleased to welcome Covanta Energy as a CAER member, which shows the growing momentum in our industry for legislation that will ensure fair and responsible trade in electronics commodities while allowing American recyclers to rationalize new investments in plants and personnel,” said Steve Skurnac, President of Sims Recycling Solutions and CAER steering committee member.

Coalition members recently visited Capitol Hill for a round of briefings with key legislators and staff. CAER participants included representatives from recent additions Sims Recycling and Waste Management Recycle America as well as Cascade Asset Management, ECS Refining, Electronics Recyclers International, Hesstech, Hugo Neu Corporation, and Redemtech.

To support Representative Gene Green (D-TX), the lead House sponsor of the bill, 19 co-sponsors now include: Mike Thompson (D-CA), Lee Terry (R-NE), Steve LaTourette (R-OH), Anna Eshoo (D-CA), Blake Farenthold (R-TX), Charlie Gonzalez (D-TX), Mazie Hirono (D-HI), Dennis Ross (R-FL), Zoe Lofgren (D-CA), Grace Napolitano (D-CA), Jeff Denham (R-CA), Jim Costa (D-CA), Gus Bilirakis (R-FL), Mike Coffman (R-CO), Mark Amodei (R-NV), Bill Huizenga, (R-MI), Todd Rokita (R-IN), Keith Ellison (D-Minnesota) and Steve Stivers (R-OH). In the Senate, similar legislation is co-sponsored by U.S. Sens. Sherrod Brown (D-OH), Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI) and Lisa Murkowski (R-AK).

CAER’s support the Responsible Electronics Recycling Act stands in contrast to the recycling industry’s primary trade association, the Institute of Scrap Recycling Industries (ISRI), which is the bill’s primary opponent. Half of the companies on the CAER steering committee are also ISRI members, including Waste Management Recycle America, Sims Recycling Solutions, Electronic Recyclers International, and Hugo Neu.

“Because our members are focused on electronics reuse and recycling, we represent a different perspective from ISRI,” said Matthew Coz, Vice President, Product Recovery Group at Waste Management. “We are taking a stand in support of restrictions on export of whole electronic projects as an essential step to creating jobs and promoting investment in the domestic recycling industry while protecting the environment.”

About the Coalition for American Electronics Recycling (CAER)
The Coalition for American Electronics Recycling represents U.S. companies that believe electronics recycling should be performed securely and sustainably, for the benefit of the American economy. CAER members are committed to growing an American industry with the capacity to manage the volume of e-waste generated within our borders, creating good jobs and expanded trade. For more information visit http://www.americanrecycling.org.

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Paul Vetter

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