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National Strategy for Electronics Stewardship (NSES)

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What is the NSES?

The National Strategy for Electronics Stewardship (NSES) provides recommendations on steps the federal government, businesses, and all Americans can take toward achieving the goals identified in Executive Order 13693, “Planning for Federal Sustainability in the Next Decade.”

The NSES results from collaboration among 16 federal departments and agencies, collectively known as the Interagency Task Force on Electronics Stewardship, as well as consultation with stakeholders from the electronics, retail, and recycling industries; environmental organizations; state and local governments; and concerned citizens. It has the following goals:

  1. Build incentives for design of environmentally preferable electronics and enhance science, research, and technology development in the United States.
  2. Ensure that the federal government leads by example.
  3. Increase safe and effective management and handling of used electronics in the United States.
  4. Reduce harm from U.S. exports of electronics waste (e-waste) and improve handling of used electronics in developing countries.

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Benefits of the NSES

EPA estimates that, in 2009, 438 million electronic products were sold in the United States, and 2.4 million tons were ready for end-of-life management. Both numbers are increasing substantially each year. By increasing its capacity to responsibly recycle our used electronics, the United States can create green jobs, lead to more productive reuse of valuable materials, and support a vibrant American recycling and refurbishing industry.

If properly executed, NSES can increase our domestic recycling efforts, reduce the volume of e-waste that is managed unsafely (both domestically and abroad), strengthen both domestic and international markets for viable and functional used electronic products, and prevent health and environmental threats at home and abroad. As discussed in the NSES and in the subsequent reports from 2014 and 2017, federal agencies are working together on various initiatives that will further progress towards these goals.

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NSES Accomplishments and Ongoing Activities

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