May 11, 2016, Boulder, CO The PBS News Hour segment "Tracking Down America's Electronic Waste" raises serious questions about the mismanagement of a portion of the electronics discarded in the United States. It revealed that the Basel Action Network placed about 200 transponders in pieces of electronic equipment and dropped them off at recycling collection sites. They tracked the transponders, finding that around one-third were exported, mostly to Hong Kong where some of the tracked equipment was dismantled under unsafe working conditions. Though not mentioned in the News Hour segment, some R2 and e-Stewards certified recyclers reportedly have been implicated.
SERI is reviewing the data and analysis behind BAN's conclusions. In the meantime, we are making the following statement.