Information for Local Governments
South Carolina passed electronics recycling legislation in 2010 that banned the disposal of specific electronics in solid waste landfills effective July 1, 2011.
The legislation requires residents to recycle desktop, laptop, notebook and tablet computers as well as computer monitors, printers and televisions. The legislation specifically says that residents “may not knowingly place or discard” a computer, computer monitor, printer and television “in any waste stream that is to be disposed of in a solid waste landfill.” To assist local governments in making South Carolinians aware of the disposal ban, the S.C. Department of Health and Environmental Control’s Office of Solid Waste Reduction and Recycling (Office) has developed example signs with suggested language that can be placed on compactors or other solid waste collection containers (Example A, Example B).
Local governments will face many challenges to meet the needs of residents as the ban goes into effect. The burden, however, is not on local governments alone.
The legislation also requires computer, printer and television manufacturers to provide recovery programs for desktop, laptop, notebook and tablet computers as well as computer monitors, printers and televisions from consumers.
In addition to the recovery programs required by manufacturers, many retailers offer recycling programs for consumer electronics.
This postcard was developed by the Office to help inform residents about electronic recycling requirements. Select the image above to view and/or print.
E-cycle South Carolina
The Office will assist local governments with outreach efforts to residents regarding available recycling options. Those efforts will include the development of an outreach campaign, “E-cycle South Carolina,” which will include assorted ready-to-go materials (e.g., billboards, print ads, press releases).
The Office also will provide technical assistance including best management practices on the collection, handling and recycling of electronics. To request assistance or E-cycle South Carolina materials, call the Office at 1-800-768-7348.
State-term Contract for Recycling Electronics
South Carolina has a state-term contract to manage electronics. The contract vendor, Creative Recycling Systems, will work with local governments to assist with single-day collection events or provide pick up at a specific number of locations. It is important to note that this contract not only addresses the banned electronics, but other electronic equipment as well. All local governments are eligible to use this contract.
NOTE: New contract pricing for local governments became effective on May 23, 2012. Visit the state-term contract for details.
Most counties and many municipalities operate collection sites for unwanted electronics from residents. While the location and type of these sites vary (e.g., drop-off sites, central location), local governments must operate them in a manner that protects the environment (e.g., minimizes breakage). While the legislation does not address the operation of these sites, local governments are recommended to follow best management practices outlined by the Electronics Recycling Coordination Clearinghouse.
All electronics must be recovered (collected and recycled) in a manner that complies with all applicable federal, state and local requirements. Additional recovery program requirements will be detailed in the regulation.View the proposed regulation.
Electronic equipment collected through local government programs must be recycled by a recoverer that – at a minimum – complies with the responsible recycling practices (R2/RIOS) or other comparable industry or governmental standards. The S.C. Department of Health and Environmental Control recognizes that recycling facilities that are (1) R2 certified or (2) designated as e-Stewards Recyclers have satisfied this requirement.
Buying ‘Greener’ Computers
The Electronic Product Environmental Assessment Tool (EPEAT) is a system to help evaluate, compare and select desktop computers, notebooks and monitors based on their environmental attributes. Currently, more than 2,000 computers and monitors are listed with more being added regularly. The system will be expanded to include additional electronic products (e.g., printers and televisions) in the future.
EPEAT evaluates electronic products in relation to 51 environmental criteria – 23 required criteria and 28 optional criteria. Products are ranked according to three tiers of environmental performance – Bronze, Silver and Gold. All registered products must meet the required criteria. Manufacturers may achieve a higher EPEAT rating for products by meeting the optional criteria.
Frequently Asked Questions
Please visit Frequently Asked Questions.
For more information about recycling in South Carolina, please call 1-800-768-7348.
This Web page was last updated on January 29, 2013.