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Certified Electronics Recyclers

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What Are Certified Electronics Recyclers?

EPA encourages all electronics recyclers to become certified by demonstrating to an accredited, independent third-party auditor that they meet specific standards to safely recycle and manage electronics. Currently two accredited certification standards exist: the Responsible Recycling ("R2") Standard for Electronics Recyclers Exit and the e-Stewards®Standard for Responsible Recycling and Reuse of Electronic Equipment©("e-Stewards®"). Exit Both programs provide the following benefits:

  • Advance best management practices
  • Offer a way to assess the environmental, worker health, and security practices of entities managing used electronics
  • Are based on strong environmental standards that maximize reuse and recycling, minimize exposure to human health or the environment, ensure safe management of materials by downstream handlers, and require destruction of all data on used electronics

Certified electronics recyclers have demonstrated through audits and other means that they continually meet specific high environmental standards and safely manage used electronics. Once certified, continual oversight by the independent accredited certifying body holds the recycler to the particular standard.

The ANSI-ASQ National Accreditation Board (ANAB) is the organization that accredits certifying bodies in the United States. They provide an updated list of which certifying body has attained accreditation to which standardExit.

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Benefits of Becoming a Certified Recycler

Responsible electronics recycling provides important benefits, such as the following:

  • Reducing environmental and human health impacts from improper recycling
  • Increasing access to quality reusable and refurbished equipment to those who need it
  • Reducing energy use and other environmental impacts associated with mining and processing of virgin materials, conserving our limited natural resources

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Getting Certified

Electronics recyclers can visit the R2Exit and e-Stewards®Exit websites to learn how to become a certified electronics recycler.

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How to Find a Certified Recycler

For Businesses, Governments and Large Purchasers

EPA recommends using certified electronics recyclers to manage unwanted used electronics. Currently, there are two accredited certification standards in the United States: R2 and e-Stewards®. Both programs advance best management practices and offer a way to assess the environmental, worker health and safety, and security practices of entities managing used electronics. The links below will direct you to websites detailing locations of certified recyclers in these two programs and the services they provide. Examples of services include, but are not limited to, data security and asset management.

For Households

For households with smaller amounts of used electronics to donate or recycle, you can find collection programs that use certified recyclers by clicking on the links below. Before donating or recycling your used electronics, follow the important tips on Electronics Donation and Recycling.

The following links exit the site Exit

  • GreenerGadgets accepts all types of electronics.
  • Call2Recycle accepts cell phones and rechargeable and single use batteries.
  • Municipal and local facilities in your state or community.
  •  Donation and recycling options developed by Sustainable Materials Management (SMM) Electronics Challenge participants.

Disclaimer: These sites are listed for informational purposes only. U.S. EPA does not endorse any of these entities nor their services.

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Implementation Study of the R2 & e-Stewards® Recycling Standards

EPA completed a limited study evaluating the implementation of the two third-party certification programs for electronic waste recyclers in the U.S. - R2 and e-Stewards®. The goal of the study is to assess whether the Standards are being implemented transparently and consistently, and are achieving the desired results. Where appropriate, the final report provides suggested strategies and recommendations for improving implementation using input from stakeholder interviews and certification audit observations.

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