Good Point Recycling pushes back against latest BAN e-waste report
- Vermont-based Good Point Recycling is questioning the findings and motives of the latest report on e-waste exports from Seattle-based Basel Action Network (BAN), as reported by Recycling Today.
- The company's CEO, Robert Ingenthron, said that his operation was targeted for being critical of BAN in the past. BAN claims to have tracked a printer handled by the company to an unregulated facility in Hong Kong, though Ingenthron disputes the details on this.
- In addition to questioning their statistical representations, Ingenthron's biggest complaint is that he feels BAN mischaracterizes many overseas recycling facilities as being unsafe when that may not be the case.
BAN's most recent report, "Scam Recycling: e-Dumping on Asia by US Recyclers," contends that 40% of the devices it tracked went to “highly polluting and unsafe operations in developing countries — mostly in Asia." The report highlights Hong Kong and mainland China in particular and calls for the New Territories recycling area to be closed. The report also says that President Obama should sign an executive order preventing U.S. government e-waste from being exported, among other recommendations.
Ingenthron has responded to the report in multiple blog posts with further detail pushing back on the idea that the portion of material being exported is that large. In reference to a particular site he wrote, "to say it is representative of [all the others] is racist and insulting. Other devices went to places overseas anyone should be proud to work with."
BAN has been very active in efforts to track e-waste to its final destination and the findings have led to damaging results for some recyclers this year. While companies such as IMS Electronics Recycling have disputed the organization's claims, others have apologized for their actions. Seattle-based Total Reclaim was recently fined $440,000 by the Washington Department of Ecology for illegal exporting and was also placed under investigation by Oregon's Department of Justice.
- Recycling Today Vermont recycler questions BAN’s priorities
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