UN StEPs Up, Japan Down

The UN is moving forward on developing worldwide eScrap standards. The program, called Solving the Ewaste Problem (the StEP initiative) has its own site and an impressive list of charter members - Microsoft, Ericson, Dell, blah, blah, blah. And with 133,000 PCs being thrown out daily in the US alone, it's certainly timely.

Recycling eWaste has the added bonus that (unlike some operations) much of this waste is worth some serious cash - floppy disks are only US $100 per ton, but lithium batteries are US $2060. Here's the complete list of eScrap spot prices for the interested. Now where did I park my dump truck.

The UN's efforts will also help put the kabosh on the illegal trade and backroom deals where countries, such as Japan, are trying to dump their eWaste in other countries as part of international business deals. Too bad Hong Kong officials just caught them in the act, and sent a recent 131 ton shipment of eJunk back into Japan. Japan, meet Karma. Karma, Japan.

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