Why We Charge For Recycling

If you have a broken TV or monitor taking up space in your garage, you’re not alone. Many of us, for one reason or another, find ourselves burdened with these devices when they meet their end. You can’t sell them, and you can’t put them in the trash—you’ve read about the e-waste problem and don’t want to contribute to it. So, what do you do?

Hopefully, you decide to take it to an electronics recycling facility, where they can extract the raw materials and repurpose them. However, when you come to a place like EPC, you might be shocked to find that dropping off your TV or monitor comes with a price tag. Why? Most drop-off items free, so why this cost money? Doesn’t the recycling company make money from recycling? Shouldn’t they pay you?

Unfortunately, recycling electronic equipment isn’t that simple. While someone might be able to make a quick buck collecting old soda cans, processing e-scrap requires far more work, with little profit for the company.

When your CRT or LCD screen is processed, it must be manually de-manufactured to remove universal waste—toxic substances such as lead and mercury which must be processed separately. One 17” CRT monitor can contain around six pounds of lead. While these substances aren’t a danger to you or your family when the device is in use, improper disposal can lead to harmful chemicals leeching into the environment. Manual labor, running and maintaining recycling machinery, and outsourcing the de-manufacturing of certain devices such as LCDs and printers are costs that add up.

You may still be wondering why it’s worth it to pay for proper disposal. After all, aren’t there other recycling companies that still take these items for free?

It’s true, some electronics recycling facilities claim to offer “no-cost” services and will take your devices free of charge. However, these companies don’t always handle end-of-life assets properly. Recently, dozens of defendants were named in a lawsuit against recycling companies that contributed to a massive CRT glass stockpile in Columbus, OH. Cleanup costs have been estimated at $18.2 million dollars, and forty-one electronics recyclers may be held financially responsible.

Our recycling prices ensure that each item is processed correctly without putting ourselves, our customers, or the environment at risk. Don’t worry, most of the items we accept are still free to drop off. Here is a complete list of what we accept free of charge:

  • Servers
  • Desktop PCs
  • Laptops
  • Tablets
  • Speaker Components and Accessories
  • Video and Photo Equipment
  • DVRs
  • Cable and Satellite Receivers
  • Digital and Film Cameras
  • Audio Equipment
  • Personal Printers
  • Scanners
  • Fax Machines
  • Gaming Consoles
  • Cell Phones and Batteries
  • Phones and Accessories
  • Small Electronic Appliances
  • All Cables and Power Cords
  • Small Household Electric Devices
  • Rechargeable Batteries

For devices with a drop-off fee, we have updated our prices as a result of the rising costs of recycling hazardous materials:

  • Screens up to 32″ and microwaves are $20 per item
  • Screens above 32″ are $40 per item

EPC has a limit of up to four items per drop-off and reserves the right to refuse any items at any time.

We hope this clears up questions you may have about our recycling practices, and that you continue to make the effort to recycle responsibly. If you have any questions, or you need to recycle in bulk, please call (636)443-1999 for more information.

EPC – Recycling Practices You Can Trust

In December, we published a blog post titled “Combating the Recycling Crisis.” In this post, we outlined the obstacles the US recycling industry currently faces, and what people can do to help lower the amount of waste headed to landfills. EPC would like to expand upon the last of these tips listed in that post:

Look for companies with trustworthy recycling processes. EPC has a strict no-landfill policy for its e-waste. When you take your electronics and appliances to EPC, you can be confident that your e-waste will be responsibly recycled and processed for reuse. 

If you have questions, you’re not alone. You may be wondering, “How can EPC make a promise like that?” or, “Can I really trust that none of my assets will end up in a landfill?” It’s important to ask these questions of any business promising environmentally sound practices. That’s why EPC wants to make things clear.

First, we should acknowledge that “e-waste” is a bit of a misnomer. The word “e-waste” implies that what we collect will become waste, which is not the case. The correct terminology is “e-scrap,” because what we collect is demanufactured and broken down into commodities such as steel, aluminum, and plastic. The materials we recover during the recycling process are suited to make housings for many types of electronics and are therefore in high demand. Spotters ensure no contamination enters the stream, and the result is a pure product we sell to various manufacturers to create new devices. Our no-landfill policy remains strict and firm.

Our word may not be enough for you—and it shouldn’t be. That’s why we have the certifications to prove it. EPC is proud to be certified to e-Stewards and ISO 14001 standards. These certifications deal with e-scrap processing and environmental protection. EPC undergoes frequent auditing to ensure compliance with these standards and continually raise the bar for our recycling practices.

Although the recycling industry continues to struggle, we are committed to maintaining and improving our efforts to keep toxic e-waste from contaminating the environment. For more information about e-Stewards, ISO 14001, or EPC’s recycling practices, visit the links below.

https://www.epcusa.com/certifications/

http://e-stewards.org/

https://www.iso.org/iso-14001-environmental-management.html

Tokyo Turns E-Waste Into Gold

As the 2020 Summer Olympics draw near, Tokyo is preparing to host the games for the first time since 1964. The Japanese capital has a long road ahead as construction continues on the New National Stadium, and they prepare to welcome millions of visitors to the city. One of the many responsibilities of the Olympic host country is to provide winning athletes with their gold, silver and bronze medals. While the metals used to manufacture these in the past have come from a variety of sources, Japan has turned to an unconventional source: e-waste. 

Nearly ninety percent of Japanese municipalities have participated in collection programs that began in April of 2017. During this two-year campaign, those living in Japan have dropped off used cell phones and other small electronic devices at certain sites. These have been collected and dismantled for precious metals, which are extracted and refined to manufacture the five thousand medals required for the Olympic games. Nearly fifty thousand tons of small electronics have been collected across the country, including approximately 5.07 million used mobile phones. In February, the program met its goals of thirty kilograms of gold, 4100 kilograms of silver, and 2700 kilograms of copper (gold medals are made from silver and only plated in gold). The program will end on March 31st, 2019.

This is the first time the awards will be made entirely from recycled materials; but one must wonder, why hasn’t this been done before? Japan’s initiative sheds light on the potential “gold mine” that exists within the millions of tons of e-waste disposed of each year worldwide. Phones, laptops, gaming consoles, and other electronics containing precious metals in their circuitry sit in landfills like a vein waiting to be struck, yet few companies take advantage of this resource. While one phone may contain only trace amounts of gold, Japan has proven that those traces add up.

The Japanese public’s enthusiasm for the initiative is not only due to the environmental benefits. Many people have expressed feelings of pride over donating their phones. The metals that once sat in their pockets will hang from the necks of the best athletes in the world. This brings a sense of public inclusion previous Olympics have lacked. In some way, every medal awarded is a win for Japan, regardless of their rank in an event.

Tokyo’s Olympics are also promoting sustainability in other ways. Recently, Japan’s Olympic team announced that it will wear uniforms made from recycled athletic textiles. Many of Japan’s top athletes have donated their old clothes for this endeavor. Both campaigns will cut costs for an expensive Olympics with a price tag once estimated at $30 billion. 

EPC appreciates Japan’s efforts to create a more sustainable and environmentally friendly Olympic games. As a company dedicated to responsible e-waste reuse and recycling, we hope this sets a precedent and encourages other nations to find more innovative ways to utilize their old devices. Perhaps Beijing could create a similar campaign for the 2022 Winter Olympics, or Paris will step up in 2024. Maybe we, the USA, can follow Japan’s example when Los Angeles hosts in 2028 for the first time in forty-four years. But whether or not our current devices are future Olympic medals, we can start looking at e-waste differently much sooner than that.

For more information about Tokyo’s e-waste recycling program, visit the link below:

https://tokyo2020.org/en/games/medals/project/

EPC Opens New Atlanta Facility

In January of this year, EPC officially opened their newest facility in Atlanta, GA, offering all EPC equipment disposition services to the region. At 65,000 square feet, the Atlanta facility is the largest EPC equipment processing facility outside of the St. Louis metropolitan area.

EPC’s presence in the Southeast began in 2008 when it opened its Columbia, South Carolina facility, which has been servicing businesses throughout the region ever since. With our new presence in Atlanta, we hope to expand that service and meet the region’s rising demand for equipment disposition. “More companies are seeing the value of professional IT asset disposition services like ours,” said Dan Fuller, president and founder of EPC. “The reality is that most businesses don’t want to pay to have antiquated equipment shipped very far. Therefore, it makes good business sense to continue to expand our geographic footprint in the United States and globally.”

Our St. Louis-based company was founded in 1984 and operates across the United States in six other locations: St. Charles, MO; Kansas City, MO; Las Vegas, NV; Houston, TX; Allentown, PA; and Wright City, MO. The company serves as an international leader in recycling and proper environmental handling of used IT equipment. EPC is a wholly-owned subsidiary of CSI Leasing, Inc., the largest independent IT leasing company in the country. EPC’s services include the sale of new and used computer systems and parts, repairs and upgrades, networking design, and IT asset management. EPC is committed to a zero-landfill policy and zero export of unprocessed equipment overseas and has signed the Basel Action Network Pledge of Responsible E-Waste Stewardship as a certified e-Steward. For more information and a complete summary of the services provided, contact EPC at (636)443-1999 or visit epcusa.com.

1100 West Lake Parkway, Suite 175, Atlanta, GA 30336

Combating the Recycling Crisis

The recycling market is in a crisis.

In January of 2018, China enacted its new recycling imports policy, essentially putting an end to decades-long United States recycling practices. China, which previously imported a whopping forty-five percent of the world’s plastic waste for recycling, now refuses to accept any imports which are not 99.5% pure. This is due to the growing environmental concerns associated with processing these contaminated plastics. Now, countries which relied on China for plastic recycling have been forced to seek alternatives. The bulk of the responsibility has fallen on other Asian countries unequipped to carry the burden China has left behind. The US, often unable to meet the 99.5% purity requirement, sends many recycled goods to the landfills. Recycling is no longer the lucrative business it once was. Instead, recycling companies lose money.

Part of the US’s crisis has to do with “single-stream” recycling. Years ago, in order to recycle, households were forced to separate recyclable goods by type: glass, plastic, metal, and paper. This method of curbside recycling made it easier for recycling companies to process pure batches of recyclable materials; however, this was much more tedious for the average household, and public participation in recycling was low. But when the US introduced single-stream recycling in the 1990s, participation greatly increased. “Single-stream” refers to the now-common practice of placing all recyclable goods into the same bin for collection. Rather than placing the responsibility on the consumer, it is now the recycling plant’s job to separate and process recyclable materials.

While single-stream recycling’s convenience made recycling more accessible to the public, it has created a challenge for the industry. Processing all recyclable goods in one bin increases the risk of contaminants, which can weaken batches of recycled plastic and render it unusable. Many uninformed consumers also place non-recyclable materials in their recycling bins, posing many problems for recycling machines. Garden hoses and soft plastics such as plastic bags are among the most common offenders, both of which can become tangled in machinery and endanger workers. Recycling plants now struggle to process pure batches of plastic that can be refined and reused, and the criteria of China’s new policy is almost impossible to achieve. Even if your home maintains good recycling practices, your efforts may be for naught.

As awareness of this problem grows, many have become discouraged.

How can we be sure our recycling is being processed properly? What is the point of recycling if our waste may end up in a landfill anyway?

The first and most important step is education. To avoid contamination, educate yourself on what can and cannot go in your recycling bin. This varies by county, so please pay attention to your local recycling and waste management practices. Pay attention to the numbers on your plastics, and be aware of which numbers your local recycling collectors can take. Avoid “wishful” or “aspirational recycling”–if you aren’t sure whether something can be recycled, don’t put it in your recycling bin. Educate your friends and family on these rules, and encourage them to be aware of their local regulations. The more people practice good recycling habits, the fewer contaminants end up in recycling machines.

When you can, reduce and reuse first. Remember, “recycle” is the third part of the triangle. While it can be hard to avoid things like single-use plastic packaging, look for ways to reduce the amount of waste your household produces, and reuse what you can. Bring reusable shopping bags to the grocery store. Use reusable water bottles instead of buying disposable plastic.

Be aware of your resources. While plastic bags don’t belong in your curbside bin, they are recyclable. I f you have the common plastic bag full of plastic bags you have no idea what to do with somewhere in your kitchen, look for special bins at your local grocery store to deposit your soft plastics. Instead of throwing old light bulbs away (which is not only wasteful, but also may pose a chemical hazard), find out if your recycling center takes light bulbs, and what kinds of light bulbs they take. While these solutions may require an extra trip, they help keep curbside recycling pure and allow you peace of mind.

Look for companies with trustworthy recycling processes. EPC has a strict no-landfill policy for its e-waste. When you take your electronics and appliances to EPC, you can be confident that your e-waste will be responsibly recycled and processed for reuse. Visit our website at https://www.epcusa.com/services/itad/asset-disposition/#recycling for more information about our recycling process.

The problems facing the recycling industry are large, and it may be tempting to give up and dump everything in the trash. But you can take responsible steps to help recycling companies process your waste.

More information on the recycling crisis, and what you can do to help:

National Geographic: Plastic Recycling Is Broken. Here’s How to Fix It.

New York Times: 6 Things You’re Recycling Wrong

Why Is The “Right To Repair” So Important?

A few months back, many iPhone 6 users were faced with Apple shutting down their iPhones with one of their software updates. Those users had made repairs on their phones, without using an authorized repair shop. Apple’s decision caused a public outcry and eventually, they reverted these changes in their next version of iOS.

This is the same situation that happens whenever an owner of a John Deere tractor attempts to make repairs through someone who is not authorized. After fixes are made, they are still required to have a John Deere representative come out and authorize the repairs, which is another added on expense and time consumer. Many of these farmers are fighting this because it could slow down their work in the field.

If this is not something that Apple is allowed to get away with, why is John Deere getting away with it?

Whether you’re wanting to fix your iPhone or the John Deere tractor in your field, the “right to repair” is a vital factor to support your livelihood.  At least eight states have been considering laws to protect the user’s “right to repair”. This “right to repair” will cause the users to have the chance to get more life out of the device, instead of tempting the user to just toss the device into the trash. Big or small, electronic devices contribute to the 20 to 50 million metric tons of e-waste that we produce every year, worldwide. When a device is harder to repair, it is more likely to be tossed into a landfill, even if there are laws that attempt to prevent this.

E-waste is extremely dangerous if it ends up in landfills. Batteries can explode and cause fires and many chemicals can get into the ground water surrounding the landfills. Instead of keeping up the habit of running to the store to buy a new device every time something breaks, we should be taking the device to the repair shop to extend the life of the item. While we are fighting for the ability to access the information to fix our devices ourselves, there are still companies like EPC, Inc. that offers service and repairs on many of your electronic devices.

EPC will always attempt to repair first, using our award-winning service department.   But if the machine is truly end of life, EPC’s Electronic Recycling Center, de-manufactures and recycles your e-waste to reduce the amount that ends up in landfills. Most electronics are 100% recyclable and EPC follows the BAN e-Steward guidelines while recycling all raw materials. We also take data security very seriously and any data recycled devices is destroyed according to the NIST 800-88 Guidelines to ensure the privacy of our customers.

Stop in to our St. Charles, MO location today to get your electronic devices repaired by our award-winning service department!

Clear the Clutter – Time to Recycle 2015 – with EPC, Inc.!

Download the Official Press ReleaseDownload the Event Flyer for this Event

Did you know that each person in North America, has an average of at least 6 pieces of ‘idle technology” in their home? Whether it’s an old cell phone, that computer that just “didn’t work one day”, an old stereo system, CD player or printer – everyone’s got something that’s got to go. Well the time is now!

EPC, Inc. is proud to offer you another outstanding recycling opportunity via our 2015 “Time to Recycle” Event that let’s you unload your antiquated electronics at EPC’s St. Charles Corporate Headquarters on May 2nd, 2015! Simply gather up your gear, and head to EPC’s St. Charles facility at 3941 Harry S Truman Blvd. and clear out the clutter!

Still not convinced why you should come out?

*This event is for PERSONAL USE ONLY and all items will be handled according to EPC’s “ZERO LANDFILL POLICY.”

On-Site Hard Drive Shredding:

EPC's Data Destruction Recycling Vehicle in Action! Check It Out In Person!

Our fleet of Data Destruction Recycling Vehicles )The DDRVs) are constantly touring North America to ensure that organizations, businesses and companies of all kinds experience the peace of mind that reliable, affordable, certified mobile Data Destruction offers. On May 2nd, 2015, you’ll be able to have YOUR hard drive shredded into tiny bits by one of our vehicles! It’s the best way to make sure that your personal data doesn’t fall into the wrong hands! You can even get an EPC Certificate of Destruction for just $5, certifying that your hard drive and all data contained therein has been safely destroyed by EPC!

Items that can be accepted include:

can-insert-1

Computers, clocks, stereos, servers, laptops, tablets, cell phones, telephones, speakers, microwaves, printers, toner cartridges, writing of all kinds.

Items that cannot be accepted include:

cant-insert-1

Firearms, any item with Freon, fluorescent bulbs, large home appliances (white goods)

PLEASE NOTE:

All CRT/TVs – $10 Each.

Another Great Bonus:

epc-certificate-sampleCertificates of Destruction are available for all shredded hard drives for just $5 each!

Still have questions? Not sure what you need to do next? Have a strange item and not sure what to do with it? Contact EPC, Inc. today and let us know how we can help you “Clear the Clutter” and make the most of this “Time to Recycle” event!

5 Reasons Why: Asset Recovery/ITAD Partner VS Surplus Auction

From Patrick Mann: ITAD Sales, EPC, Inc.

I’ve lived in Texas my whole life, and if there’s one thing that’s even BIGGER than Texas, it’s the auction industry. When they start doing reality TV programs about things – well -it’s huge. What’s missing though, especially when it comes to business, your data, and the gear you’re trying to find a purpose for (especially when your company is done with it), is some common sense that should be the overriding factor when your company’s reputation and future business influence are concerned.

Recently I consulted a customer on the value of doing business with a company like EPC, and explained the differences and benefits between having an Trusted ITAD/Asset Recovery Partner like EPC, and sending your gear off to the quick-buck auction block. We really are a partner with you throughout the process, we help any way we can using our nation-wide reach.

 True Secure Data Destruction: Sending off your systems, full of sensitive customer or company information to an open bidder during an auction, is more than a nightmare scenario waiting to happen, it is against the law. EPC, Inc. on the other hand is 1.) a certified NAID service provider & BAN e-Steward ready to receive, audit, and completely and securely destroy your data via hard drive wipe or shred

— Proper Disposal of End-of-Life Equipment: Having a trail for future reference (either for inventory or audit purposes) is next to impossible when you consider auctions. With EPC, Inc. an entire, detailed history of each and every asset is provided to help you when the auditors come calling, wondering where system x3497G has gotten to.

 Reduces the Maintenance for Your Company’s IT Staff: Let’s say you’re going to be prudent and remove the information from your systems before you send your units off to auction. That’s a LOT of physical move time, time to destroy data, time to verify what’s in which machine and potential theft of assets in-house. EPC, Inc. provides you with all of these services and more as a matter of course when having them included in our ITAD Asset Recovery Services. Any CPA will love that you have functional, detailed reports that make reviewing what your PC has (and doesn’t have) a dream.

 Targeted Markets Make Moving Your Cleared Gear Easy: At an auction, your information is available, and in the wind the instant the auction is over. With EPC, Inc. after the drive data is security destroyed (via wipe or shred), our retail and wholesale customer base is made up of a very wide variety of targeted markets, making the ability to move your equipment that much easier. The more potential buyers there are, the faster the chance to take advantage of current industry values for your gear happens. In the end, that means that whatever you make back helps to reduce the cost of acquiring EPC’s peace of mind for you and your company or organization.

 Paying the House: When it’s all said and done at an auction of any kind, you’re going to end up paying the auctioneer, the house they work in and more their part of the overall transaction which means that you lose even more value/profit when it comes to selling off your equipment. EPC, Inc. actually helps to ensure that each piece – can be moved for a higher revenue return. Who doesn’t want more money for their product?

These are just some of the things to remember when it comes to making sure that you’re benefiting from a true, valued-added relationship when considering the values of having “An Asset Recovery/ITAD Partner VS. Surplus Auction.”

Do you have one that we missed? We’re always interested in hearing from you!

Shutting Down or Moving? How to Choose the Right Asset Disposition and Remarketing Partner

patrick-banner-3-6-13-enterprise

From Patrick Mann: ITAD SalesEPC, Inc.

Whether you’re a property manager, an IT or data center manager, a lessor, or a liquidation manager, when your company charges you with disposition of physical IT assets, there’s little room for error. Because of the unplanned and chaotic nature of the situations that call for IT asset disposition, you’re often up against a hard deadline and a shifting, disorganized environment.

When disposing of IT assets in these situations, your task is to mitigate the risk to your organization and get the job done quickly.

Common situations that call for quick disposition of IT assets include:

• Bankruptcy
• Consolidation
• Merger
• Data center merger
• Downsizing
• Closing a division or data center

Usually, when these situations occur, the property manager or IT manager doesn’t have much time to plan and manage the disposition. In these chaotic situations, often the best approach to asset disposition is to partner with an experienced asset disposition solution provider or equipment re-marketer with the expertise and facilities to handle the logistical challenge.

Here are three things to consider when evaluating a potential asset disposition partner:

• Expertise: Is the solution provider familiar with your equipment? A trained representative can appraise the equipment on site and tell you whether or not it’s worth removing. In some situations, understanding each party’s obligations and liability for data security and the equipment itself will determine the best disposition process. An expert in reverse logistics and asset disposition can help you sort through the different scenarios.

• Ability: It sounds the same as expertise, but it’s not. You can find people who know a lot about reselling equipment, but are they able to utilize company employees and bring in the labor to move the equipment out before your deadline? Do they have certified processes for handling and destroying data? When you’re working with a strict timetable—perhaps you’ve been allocated a certain number of days by a bankruptcy court or your company’s lease is expiring—you need a solution provider who knows the equipment and can move it out quickly and efficiently and ensure data security

• Logistics: Where is the equipment going? How is it getting there? Is it being packed and handled to prevent damage and maintain maximum resale value? Is the chain of custody clear and secure?

• Value: The financial value your organization is getting back through the asset disposition should be an important factor when deciding on a solution provider, but it should not be the only one. Consider all of your costs such as the use of internal resources, transportation to far away facilities, as well risks of data breach or environmental non-compliance. The costs could outweigh the value of the assets themselves. The right asset disposition partner will help you minimize all of the costs and the risks while maximizing the return.

When you’re under the clock because of a merger, bankruptcy, data center closing, or another similar scenario, you don’t want to make mistakes. Partnering with a responsible and experienced IT asset disposition provider can make the difference between a smooth, organized process, and a chaotic, disorganized one.

5 Strangest Returns to EPC, Inc. – Part 1

EPC, Inc. has been fortunate enough to become a juggernaut in the IT Asset Recovery business and our reputation as one of the best solutions for end-of-life IT equipment continues to grow.

Those of you that consider “IT equipment” computers, printers, servers and more – you’re absolutely right. The vast majority of equipment returned falls into these categories, but you may be surprised what makes its way back to EPC.

First, a bit of background. EPC, Inc. is owned by CSI Leasing, one of the world’s largest IT lessors that provide leased equipment around the globe. Companies will receive, for example, 2,200 new computer systems, and the now off-lease equipment is acquired by EPC, Inc. and sold to schools, businesses, people in our 5,500 sq ft retail showroom – anyone that wants to save money. This “IT Equipment received back off-lease also includes some items you’d have never thought would grace the halls EPC.

Not only does this first of many listings of “weird returns to EPC, Inc.” make for an interesting read, it’s also a great way for those looking for the “out of the ordinary” to find solutions thanks to EPC, Inc.

5.) Medical Centrifuge: Centrifuges are machines that rapidly spin fluids to separate substances of different densities by using centrifugal force to produce a form of artificial gravity. They come in from medical companies of all kinds when medical equipment is upgraded.

4.) X-ray Machine: Yes, those machines that you see inside of hospitals, medical clinics and dentists office across the nation that are taking pictures of bones, screws, metal plates and foreign objects eventually make their way into EPC, Inc.

Read more