When most companies and organizations are choosing an electronics disposal company to work with these days, one of the most important criteria they look at is certification. At least to those who are aware that recycling firms need to adhere to different recycling certifications to be considered reputable.
The e-Stewards and R2/RIOS certifications, in particular, are deemed rites of passage for any recycling company that considers itself serious. They also serve as a mark of assurance to clients who ask for proof of legitimacy from these companies.
Not the End-all
There is no little doubt that certifications are definitely important; and true, you should use them to separate the chaff from the fine grain. The point here, however, is to bring attention to the fact that this alone is not enough and should not be the end-all when looking for trustworthy dealers.
Oftentimes, certified recyclers are caught pants down with pollution issues, downstream or other problems. A perfect example is the case of a Minnesota recycler who was nabbed hoarding 2,500 tons of CRT monitors, not too long ago. Apparently, this company had several hidden sites that served the purpose of processing waste that seemed to elude many an auditor and customer. Upon further probing, it was found that the company had, not one but, several non-conformances. The highly touted e-Stewards notwithstanding.
That's just one example of such cases.
The blame is not just on the recycling center, but is shared with the original customers and comes as a double-edged sword: financial and legal issues to contend with. And you can argue it's more than that when you factor in the blow dealt to the brand.
So, What really is Important?
For starters, it's good to ascertain the e-waste recycling center is insured.
As already pointed out, you as the customer will be held legally and financially responsible for any pollution that comes from your products, or the recycling process the product undergoes.
But the insurance is contingent upon the type of recycling plant and its certifications. The pollution insurance is important because it absolves you of any financial burden in the event that something happens at the plant where your equipment is undergoing recycling.
Whenever you're choosing an electronic waste recycling company, one of the first things you need to think about is what happens to your waste.
Ensure that the facility you choose has a strong commitment to doing everything right, and this includes every little step in the process. Ensure that a new lease of life will be granted to every product you are recycling and that none of it ends in a landfill.
Another thing you need to look at is the friendliness of the company's process to the environment, making sure it falls in line with all laws and regulations in place. This should also include learning more about the process with regard to whether or not it releases dangerous gases, liquids or any other chemical(s) into the atmosphere.
Crosscheck to ascertain that the e recycling firm doesn't have any open violations, be it at the federal, state, or local level. If they are, this suggests some poor practices which you don't want to be connected to. Plus, you don't want to be playing your part in fueling the culture of pollution.
All said, ensuring the electronic recycling company holds good practices in high regard is just as crucial as being certified. Remember that.