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Responsible Recycling

Maintaining Your R2 Certification: Ensuring Ongoing Compliance and Excellence

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Congratulations, you have earned R2 (Responsible Recycling) Certification, and now you are the proud owner of an R2 Certified facility.  With that comes responsibility to ensure that your facility continues to practice certain sustainable practices in line with the R2 Standard requirements developed by SERI.  Your facilities must meet a distinct set of requirements that cover various aspects of your operations.

Below are the key requirements for R2 Certified facilities:

Environmental, Health, and Safety (EHS) Management System – Establish and maintain a comprehensive EHS management system that addresses hazards and risks associated with e-waste processing.

  • Implement policies, procedures, and training programs to ensure worker safety and environmental protection.

  • Comply with all applicable local, state, and federal regulations related to e-waste management.

 

Responsible Recycling Practices – Implement procedures for the proper handling, storage, and transportation of e-waste to prevent environmental contamination and ensure worker safety.

  • Ensure the secure and responsible processing of sensitive data, including data destruction and secure chain of custody.

  • Maximize the reuse, refurbishment, and recycling of electronic equipment and components, minimizing the amount of waste sent to landfills or incineration. This order is very important.  Start with reuse, move to refurbishment, then to recycling.  And only then whatever does not fit these three categories can be headed for the landfills or for incineration. 

 

Material Tracking and Downstream Verification – Maintain detailed records and documentation of all incoming and outgoing materials, including their final disposition.

  • Conduct due diligence and regularly audit downstream vendors to ensure their compliance with environmental and social responsibility standards.

  • Implement measures to prevent the export of e-waste to countries that lack the infrastructure or capacity to manage it responsibly.

 

Worker Health and Safety – Provide comprehensive training and personal protective equipment (PPE) to all workers involved in e-waste processing.  This training should not be one-time event, and should ensure that your workers get periodic refresher training.

  • Implement robust procedures for the identification, assessment, and control of workplace hazards, including exposure to toxic substances.

  • Ensure the availability of first aid and emergency response capabilities within the facility.

 

Management of Restricted Substances – Identify and properly manage the handling, storage, and disposal of restricted substances, such as mercury, lead, and other hazardous materials found in electronic equipment.

  • Implement testing and verification processes to ensure compliance with applicable regulations and industry standards.

 

Continual Improvement and Reporting – Establish measurable goals and objectives for improving environmental, health, and safety performance.

  • Regularly review and update your R2 certified facility's management systems and procedures to enhance their effectiveness.

  • Engage in transparent reporting and communication with stakeholders, including regulatory authorities and the broader community.

 

Meeting these comprehensive requirements demonstrates a facility's commitment to responsible and sustainable e-waste management practices, ensuring the protection of the environment, the health and safety of workers, and the community.

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