Government Recycling Efforts Cost Too Much

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By contrast, local governments attempting to operate electronic collection and recycle services for residents are struggling, prompting states to enact fee programs to come to their rescue. But even the fees, which have risen on average by 40 to 100 percent since 2001, are failing to cover the costs.

Some argue that these recycling and reuse efforts by the private sector do not even come close to addressing the millions of obsolete electronics that are entering the waste stream each year. Yet this argument fails to acknowledge the enormous achievements the industry has made in a relatively short time. Last year [2004], Dell, HP, and IBM collectively recycled 160 million pounds of computers and computer equipment. This figure doesn't include the number of units remanufactured for donations and reuse.

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