Addabbo’s electronic waste recycling events have been very successful.
By Forum Staff
State Sen. Joe Addabbo, Jr. (D-Howard Beach) this week announced that he is sponsoring legislation to establish a task force within the State Department of Environmental Conservation to conduct an in-depth examination of the e-waste program’s performance and recommend improvements.
Addabbo noted that the e-waste recycling and reuse law, which is intended to allow consumers to work with municipalities and manufacturers to keep electronic devices out of the waste stream, has reportedly been subject to a number of pitfalls. There have been instances reported in which manufacturers have refused to accept e-waste or have charged high fees for the transaction. In other circumstances, according to the senator, municipal curbside recycling programs either haven’t been put into place or, when implemented, have not been as effective as possible.
“This waste is dangerous to our environment, and it is time to reexamine our e-waste law to find out how and where it’s working well, and to find ways to improve it in circumstances where it’s simply not living up to expectations,” Addabbo said on Monday.
Under the bill, the DEC commissioner would convene the E-Waste Task Force within the agency to study the amount of electronic waste recycled; rates of compliance with existing recycling and re-use statutes; how municipalities are implementing e-waste programs, and other issues associated with the law. The task force also would provide a report and recommendations to improve e-waste recycling and reuse efforts to legislative leaders and chairs of the Environmental Conservation Committees in the Senate and Assembly for potential legislative action.
“Here in New York City, our e-waste recycling efforts have fallen short, especially for senior and disabled residents who have trouble transporting their electronic waste to collection sites,” Addabbo said. “Legislation (S.5464/2016) I had co-sponsored with other city colleagues to provide for scheduled curbside pick-up has stalled, and it’s clear that we need to take comprehensive action to make it easier for people to recycle e-waste and protect our environment. Creating a special panel in DEC to specifically look into this issue and come up with viable solutions may help.”
The bill is currently under review by the Senate Environmental Conservation Committee.
Addabbo added that he will continue “to personally make it easier for my constituents to safely dispose of e-waste in our communities. In addition to my twice-a-year community recycling fairs, which accept electronics, I also sponsor recycling events specific to e-waste disposal, with the next tentatively scheduled for September 9th.”
Indeed, the senator’s next recycling event will be held on Saturday, Sept. 9 in the St. Camillus School Hall parking lot, located on Beach 99th Street, between Rockaway Beach Boulevard and Shore Front Parkway, in Rockaway, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Addabbo noted that he has been sponsoring e-waste recycling events since 2009 which have collected approximately 144 tons of unwanted electronics to be recycled.