Product Stewardship and Extended Producer Responsibility Northwest Product Stewardship Council
Product Stewardship Product Stewardship is an environmental management strategy that means whoever designs, produces, sells, or uses a product takes responsibility for minimizing the product's environmental impact throughout all stages of the products' life cycle. The greatest responsibility lies with whoever has the most ability to affect the lifecycle environmental impacts of the product.
Extended Producer Responsibility • Extended Producer Responsibility (EPR) • an environmental policy approach in which a producer’s responsibility, physical and/or financial, for a product is extended to the post-consumer stage of a product’s life cycle (OECD, 2001) • Often used interchangeably with “product stewardship” • Similar terms: • Manufacturer/Producer Responsibility • Shared Responsibility
Related Concepts • Cradle-to-Cradle manufacturing • Design of products whose materials are perpetually circulated back into commerce in closed loops. Maintaining materials in closed loops maximizes material value and commercial use without damaging ecosystems. • organic nutrient stream • technical nutrient stream • Green Chemistry • Design of chemical products and processes that reduce or eliminate the use and generation of hazardous substances.
Examples of Product Stewardship • Manufacturers finance or provide take back programs for recycling or special disposal. • Manufacturer redesign and reformulation of products to make products: • non or less toxic, such as eliminating PBDEs or mercury • more recyclable, such as using easy-to-recycle materials • easier to disassemble, such as reducing and standardizing types of fasteners • more energy efficient, such as meeting Energy Star criteria • made with recycled content • Etc.
Why is This Important to Us? • Much waste we are handling is manufactured products. • Most of these products are produced far away and globally, but the environmental end-of-life impacts are local. • Local governments in the past have been responsible for providing end-of-life management and disposal. • These costs are ever increasing due to the design and formulation of the products: toxic, not recyclable, hard to disassemble, etc. and cost to properly handle. • Since local governments have no control over the design of the products, but have had the responsibility for financing their disposal, there has been no feedback loop to the design/manufacturing process.
EPR Provides Many Solutions • Manufacturer financing or take-back of products provides an economic feedback loop that then influences design, leading to cleaner, safer products and less cost for future end-of-life management • Removes program or financing burden from local governments (or provides financing) • Provides much more convenient options to customers than what government can provide • Results in greater recovery of toxic and recyclable materials
EPR Provides Many Solutions • EPR keeps resources circulating in commerce, creating jobs and business opportunities that are lost when materials are disposed. • EPR harnesses business know how and relationships to develop superior, more effective and less expensive programs. • Some manufacturers favor instead of prescriptive regulations. • Provides non-tax solution to problems.
1990 “EPR” first coined for Swedish Environment Ministry by Thomas Lindhqvist, Lund University 1991 German Packaging Ordinance – the first EPR program - shifts responsibility for packaging waste to industry – DSD “Green Dot” system (essentially, producers of packaging finance curbside recycling collection) Progressive expansion of EPR from packaging to other products - batteries, electronics, refrigerants, tires, appliances, end of life vehicles, paint . . . 1995 – OECD EPR work program commences – Guidance Manual published 2001 EU electronics directive (WEEE, RoHS) January 2003 - mandates EPR, and sets toxic substance limits – implementation starting 2006 EPR spreading through Canada, Europe, Asia, beginning in U.S. and Americas. China adopting electronic standards similar to EU. Origin and Development of EPR
Many Examples of EPR • Voluntary and Legislated Programs • Both have been stimulated by legislative action or anticipation of legislative action. • Legislation usually needed to: • Level playing field so all participate and finance, not just a few • Provide general performance standards and collection rates • Enable industry-established Stewardship Organizations to collect fees for financing. • Drive material into programs by banning disposal
Example: Electronics • Throughout EU, Japan, Taiwan, beginning in Canada and China, etc. • Washington State Electronics Recycling Law • Passed 2006, establishes program 2009 • Similar approach now incorporated into models/legislation by 10 Northeast states, 5 Midwest states and Oregon • Similar approach endorsed by resolution of Council of State Governments (Nov. 30, 2006) • Dell Global Recycling Policy • Free recycling of any Dell product from individual anywhere. • Free recycling of similar other-brand product when purchasing Dell product.
Example: Electronics • Hewlett-Packard • Key Supporter of Washington State Law • Operates its own electronics recycling facilities in partnership with Noranda • Target is to take back one billion lbs of product by 2007 with return and recycling services in more than 40 countries
Examples: Electronics “Marcy Eastham, Northwest governmental-affairs manager for Hewlett Packard, said her company long ago concluded it was desirable to design products with end-of-life in mind. Older model laptops used a variety of screws until it dawned on HP recyclers it was faster to break down machines with one type of screw. Adhesives are scrutinized for their harm to the environment and their role in recycling. HP also strongly believed the cost of recycling should not be carried by a consumer fee, as is the case in California's law.“ - Seattle Times Editorial, Nov. 14, 2006
Ex.: Batteries and Cell Phones Rechargeable Battery Recycling Corporation (RBRC) • Financed by manufacturers. • Has over 30,000 retail collection locations for rechargeable batteries and cell phones. Examples of national retailers that participate in the RBRC Call2Recycle program: • Best Buy • Black & Decker • Cingular Wireless • Circuit City • The Home Depot • Lowe's • Office Depot • RadioShack • RadioShack • Sears • Staples • Target • US Cellular • Verizon Wireless
EPR Programs Common in Canada • Used or Expired Medication • Used Tires • Used Oil, Containers and Filters • Used Oil Only • Used Electronics • Used Paint, Stains and Varnishes • Spent Lead Acid Batteries • Used Solvents/Flammable Liquids, Gasoline, Pesticides, etc.
NW Product Stewardship Council • The Northwest Product Stewardship Council is a group of local, state and federal government agencies that works with businesses and nonprofit groups to integrate product stewardship principles into the policy and economic structures of the Pacific Northwest. • Steering Committee Members include: • Cities of Tacoma and Seattle • Washington Counties of King, Kitsap, Snohomish, Thurston, Walla Walla, and Yakima • Oregon Metro and Oregon Department of Environmental Quality • EPA, Region X • Washington State Department of Ecology
NW Product Stewardship Council • In 2007, several steering committee agencies received grants from the Department of Ecology through the Coordinated Prevention Grant Program for 20007-08. • $253,000 to support product stewardship work • $100,000 to coordinate council activities and implement the NWPSC Communications Plan. • Subcommittee work includes: • Electronics, Pharmaceuticals, Mercury-containing products, Paint, Beverage Containers, Tires • Legislation Subcommittee • Chemicals Policy Subcommittee
Next Steps: Electronics • Represent governments in the WA Electronics Product Recycling Law rule-making process. • Assist local businesses (retailers, collectors, processors, and charities) with the transition to new WA electronics recycling program. • Assist with the expansion of Take it Back Network to more businesses, so they can benefit from new system AND provide more convenient services to our citizens. • Assisting Oregon with passage of an Electronics Product Stewardship law.
Next Steps: Pharmaceuticals • Conduct a pilot project to collect unwanted medicines at pharmacies in Washington. • Modeled after the B.C. system. • Expand the pilot project to more pharmacies and additional locations: hospice, adult care, etc. • Develop relationships and support with manufacturers. • Participate in regional and national dialogue. • Prepare for state Product Stewardship legislation for unwanted medicines.
Next Steps: Mercury • Participate in pilot project to expand Thermostat Recycling Corporation (TRC) program to public facilities. • Work to find an ongoing product stewardship solution for fluorescent compact bulbs and tubes. • Expand Take it Back Network to collect mercury-containing devices. • Recruit HVAC contractors into TRC program. • Recruit auto wrecking yards into End of Life Vehicles Solutions (ELVS) program.
Next Steps: Paint • Participate in current national dialogue with paint manufacturers lead by the Product Stewardship Institute to establish a national system to deal with excess paint. • Participate in regional pilots identified by national dialogue.
Next Steps: Beverage Containers • Coordinate the Washington State Beverage Container Recycling Initiative to conduct pilot projects to test the use of incentives to increase the collection, recovery and recycling of used beverage containers in Washington State. • Track and provide input to the Oregon legislative process to amend the bottle bill to include product stewardship elements to increase recovery of beverage containers.
Next Steps: Tires • Follow state legislation to ensure that tire funds are allocated to pursue product stewardship solutions for used tires. • Monitor developments on tire pile clean up and funding.
Next Steps: Legislative Subcommittee • Monitor legislation in Oregon and Washington to support bills that are favorable to product stewardship programs and policies. • Provide an analysis of new bills and recommended actions to steering committee agencies and other local governments.
Anticipated: Legislation • PBDE Ban (2007) • Pharmaceuticals (2008 -2009) • Specific or All Mercury Containing Devices (2008 +) • Mercury thermostats • Mercury switches • Compact fluorescent lamps and tubes (likely financed by fee on incandescent bulbs) • Tires (2009 - 2010) • Framework Legislation (2008 – 2010+) • Paint, Packaging, Others - ? Bills in WA, OR, CA and many other states
Additional Actions Possible • Develop policy statements for WSAC, WACO, NACO etc. • Establish local government resolutions on EPR. • Rapid new development in California • Bring in national/international experts for industry forums on cradle-to-cradle, green chemistry, meeting EU standards, etc.
Coordination: Many Parties The NWPSC shares information and coordinates activities with many parties in the public, non-profit and private sector. • U.S. EPA • Department of Ecology • Policy Forum • State Solid Waste Advisory Committee • Product Stewardship Institute • Product Policy Institute • North America Hazardous Materials Management Association • Environmental NGOs: WCRC, WEC, WA Toxics Coalition
Contact Information Contact the NWPSC Coordinator with questions and comments at (206) 723-0528 Email at firstname.lastname@example.org Web site www.productstewardship.net