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New York enacts electronic waste recycling law

ALBANY - New Yorkers will be able to recycle their dusty dot-matrix printers and cobwebbed computer monitors for free now that the state has joined 22 others in enacting an electronic waste recycling law.

Under the law recently signed by Gov. David A. Paterson, all manufacturers that sell electronic equipment in the state must have a free, convenient electronic waste, or "e-waste," recycling program in effect by April 1, 2011.

The law also makes it illegal for individuals to dispose of electronic waste at landfills, effective Jan. 1, 2015.

Kate Sinding, a lawyer with the Natural Resources Defense Council, called New York's bill "the most progressive, best researched e-waste bill in the country," building on successful e-waste laws in Washington, Oregon and Minnesota.

Under the new law, each manufacturer will have to recycle or reuse its market share of e-waste by weight, based on its three-year average of annual sales in the state. They will also have to submit annual reports to the Department of Environmental Conservation documenting that they have met goals for collection and recycling.

The law covers televisions, VCRs, DVD and MP3 players, game consoles, fax machines, and computers and their peripherals such as monitors, keyboards, mice and printers.

Resa Dimino, special assistant in DEC's policy office, said manufacturers are likely to collaborate and develop single collection locations in large communities.

The state law, which has broad industry support, pre-empts a New York City recycling law that was the subject of an industry lawsuit that is now moot. - AP

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