Boulder, Colorado - Press reports indicate that, last week, an R2 certified company used a bulldozer to bury CRTs and other electronic equipment near its facility in Georgetown, Kentucky. The purported action took place a week after an R2 audit of the facility. Such bizarre, outrageous, illegal, and unethical behavior is hard to fathom and will not be tolerated by SERI or the company's certification body, Orion Registrar.
The company identified in the press reports is GES - Global Environmental Services. On October 1st and 2nd, Orion Registrar conducted an audit of GES' Georgetown facility. Serious non-conformities were identified - though none relating to the illegal disposal of material - and the facility was given until October 30th to complete corrective actions addressing each non-conformity.
However, based on the egregious nature of the subsequent activities chronicled in the press reports, the facility's R2 certification has been suspended by Orion. SERI absolutely supports this action.
There is no room in the electronics recycling industry for the sort of behavior exhibited in these reports. Electronics recycling companies must adhere to a higher standard of conduct - for their own sake, as well as that of the industry as a whole and the environment.
SERI is conducting unannounced spot audits of R2 certified facilities. Through these, we have and will continue to identify companies that are adhering to the requirements of the R2 Standard, as well as some that are not meeting all of the requirements. In instances where not all R2 requirements are being met, SERI is working with the certification bodies to address the shortcomings.
Raising the bar within the electronics recycling industry is a long-term undertaking. Collectively, we are making progress. Let us continue to do so.