In the workplace or at home, there are few things as invigorating as the arrival of new electronics. And yet, as full of promise as a new laptop, smart phone or tablet device is, there is always a moment of reflection as you unplug your old machine and consider what to do with it. Fortunately, if your machine is at the end of its useful life, the Electronic Products Recycling Association (EPRA) is able to provide safe and secure recycling; easing your concerns and protecting our environment.
In fact, taking care of the environment is one of the pillars of corporate social responsibility. As electronics abound, the importance of the EPRA service in taking appropriate care of our electronic waste also becomes increasingly valuable.
Now serving close to 90 percent of Canadians across eight provinces coast to coast, EPRA is our industry’s flagship entity to provide accessible options for responsible recycling of unwanted end-of-life electronics. As an industry-led and voluntary initiative, EPRA administers a rigorous recycling standard that prevents the illegal export of electronic waste and ensures adherence to environmental, health, safety, and data security criteria.
“We have significantly expanded our program and our capability to deliver an effective, cost-efficient and environmentally-responsible electronics recycling program,” says Lloyd Bryant, chair of EPRA’s board of directors and ITAC’s vice-chair. ITAC has been a long- standing supporter of industry-led environmental stewardship for our products.
The overall expansion of the EPRA programs and greater program efficiency and effectiveness benefit both electronics consumers and stewards. Businesses and individuals have more access to recycling programs and drop-off locations. Stewards are supported in their regulatory compliance responsibility, a task made easier for them with the roll out of a national registration, reporting and remitting (3R) program. Businesses — large and small — looking to bolster the environmental component of their commitment to corporate social responsibility now have an easier way to comply with provincial regulations, a guarantee of improved data security, and support from a bilingual steward services team.
Lloyd points to EPRA’s achievement of registering 6,400 stewards and certifying more than 1,340 permanent collection sites as an example of the organization’s rapid growth since its 2011 founding. Almost 500,000 tonnes of electronic waste — representing millions of devices — have been diverted since Canada’s first industry-led and regulated electronics recycling programs started in 2007.
In the past year, EPRA doubled the number of provinces in which it operates regulated programs, launched websites related to its eight provincial programs, and increased its education and awareness initiatives. One of the major educational initiatives was the development of a video, targeted to consumers, that explains what happens to end-of-life electronics after they are dropped off at an EPRA collection site. This video can be viewed on the eprassociation.ca website. Also launching this fall is EPRA’s new education and awareness campaign that encourages the public to “Extend Nature’s Warranty. Recycle Your Electronics.” The advertising reinforces the fact that “technology advances fast, but we only have one earth” and “committing to our planet ’s future, means properly recycling our electronics of the past.”
Together, by returning our end-of-life electronics to an approved EPRA drop-off location, we are helping to make sure that using and enjoying electronics of today includes responsibly recycling them for a cleaner tomorrow.
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Northwest Territories end-of-life electronics recycling program is operated by The Government of the Northwest Territories. Please visit www.enr.gov.nt.ca/programs/electronics-recycling-program for more information on electronics recycling in Northwest Territories.
End-of-life electronic products stewardship programs are not regulated in Nunavut. Select another province or close the window.
Yukon’s end-of-life electronics recycling program is operated by Environment Yukon. Please visit www.recycleyukonelectronics.ca for more information on electronics recycling in Yukon.
Alberta’s end-of-life electronics recycling program is operated by the Alberta Recycling Management Authority (ARMA). Please visit www.albertarecycling.ca for more information on electronics recycling in Alberta.