Saturday, June 02, 2007

Staples Adds Computer Take-Back to Recycling Program

FRAMINGHAM, Mass., May 22, 2007 -- Staples, Inc. announced yesterday that it will now accept used computers and other office technology for recycling at any Staples store nationwide, becoming the first national retailer to offer computer recycling in stores every day.

Staples' program allows customers to bring in used computers, monitors, laptops, printers, faxes and all-in-ones to any U.S. Staples store, where the equipment will be recycled in accordance with environmental laws. The company will take back all brands whether or the products were purchased at Staples, and will charge only a $10 fee for large items. Staples said it won't accept televisions or large, floor-model photocopiers at this time.

The company will partner with Amandi Services to handle the recycling, and said it will follow guidelines created by the EPA to ensure safe and effective recycling of e-waste.

"An estimated 133,000 computers are discarded every day in the U.S.," said Mark Buckley, vice president of environmental affairs at Staples. "We know that small businesses and consumers want to recycle their used office technology but are often frustrated by the lack of convenient options available. By making it easy to recycle, Staples helps customers take action in handling e-waste in an environmentally responsible way."

"It's not always easy being green. However, through the leadership of Staples, Americans will see that preventing pollution by recycling unwanted electronics is as easy as it gets," said EPA adminstrator Stephen L. Johnson. "EPA and our Plug-In To eCycling partners are helping make sure yesterday's high-tech gadgets do not go to waste."

Equipment is bagged and sealed when customers drop them off at the Staples customer service desk. The equipment is then picked up and delivered to Amandi Services, who disassembles the equipment into its component parts and uses industry-leading standards for data destruction. Amandi then recycles the raw materials, such as the plastics, metals, printed circuit boards and Cathode Ray Tubes (CRT). The CRTs, which are the most hazardous part of electronics waste, are recycled utilizing Amandi's proprietary technology into a raw material that is used to manufacture new televisions.

Staples is a U.S. EPA Plug-In to eCycling partner and has offered computer recycling in its Seattle area stores for the past two years. In addition to computer and office technology recycling, Staples provides customers with in-store recycling for ink and toner cartridges, cell phones, PDAs and rechargeable batteries. In 2006, the company recycled more than 17 million ink and toner cartridges and 3,500 tons of electronic waste.

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