Wednesday, July 16, 2008

4 Ways to Reduce E-Waste

Co-Op America emailed out a GREAT checklist on easy ways to reduce e-waste!

1. Check your television. – Many TVs made after 2003 were equipped with digital tuners. Look for a label that says "Integrated Digital Tuner," "Integrated Digital Receiver," "Digital Receiver Built-in," or "Digital Receiver Built-in." If you have a digital tuner already, you're all set.

2. Use a converter box. – If you don't have a digital tuner, a set-top converter box can still keep your TV from becoming e-waste. Each household is eligible to receive two vouchers, valued at $40 each, to use toward purchase of a converter. Check out for more information.

3. Recycle your television – If you must purchase a new television, make sure your old one isn't simply carted to a landfill. The Basel Action Network provides a list of recyclers who have pledged not to export hazardous e-waste. Also, Sony is offering a free take-back program for all Sony electronics in the US.

4.Speak out about the e-waste nightmare -- Finally, take our action to tell the FCC that you're concerned about the coming deluge of e-waste that may be triggered by the digital switch. Tell the FCC to require manufacturers to follow Sony's lead and take responsibility for their products throughout their entire life cycles.

BONUS ENERGY-SAVING STEPS: If you must purchase a new television, look for an LCD (liquid crystal display) model, marked with the Energy Star label. LCDs use six times less energy than plasma screen models. You can cut your energy use further by unplugging your TV (and its attached appliances) when you're not watching it; this prevents your electronics from consuming electricity even while not in use.

Please forward this blog post to all your friends and family. We need as many people as possible to understand how to reduce the impact of the digital switch, and we need a groundswell of pressure on the FCC and the electronics companies to manage the e-waste problem better.

Send an e-mail to the FCC today and visit our Responsible to find contact information for major electronics manufacturers, and links to the TV TakeBack campaign.

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