The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has ordered Metro Metals Corporation and Avista Recycling, Inc., to properly dispose of computer waste, which they attempted to illegally export to Vietnam. Metro Metals Corporation, based in Toronto and Avista Recycling, Inc., based in Hopkins, Minnesota, arranged for the export of 913 discarded computer monitors to Vietnam. The shipment was discovered by U.S. Customs and Border Protection agents during an inspection at the Port of Seattle.
The companies violated several hazardous waste management requirements in this transaction, including misidentification of waste, disregarding pre-transit requirements, failure to notify the EPA of their intent to export waste and bypassing the consent process required for Vietnam to receive hazardous waste from the U.S. This shipment had nearly 1,000 computer monitors, and each color computer CRT monitors contains, on average, four pounds of lead, and may contain mercury, cadmium and arsenic. Thus proper disposal of such items is important to ensure public and environmental health and safety.
“Companies that collect discarded cathode ray tubes must be held accountable to manage these wastes in compliance with our laws which ensure that they will be properly handled, and not sent abroad to countries that have not agreed to receive waste from the U.S.” said Edward Kowalski, EPA’s Director of the Office of Compliance and Enforcement in Seattle.
To learn more about CRTs and their regulation under the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA) click here.