The Israeli government continues to process a bill that will regulate, for the first time, management of the country’s electronic waste. If it gets approved by the Knesset, the bill would require manufacturers to finance the proper recycling of their materials.
The bill would also stipulate that by 2020 it would be illegal to send electronic products that had not been recycled or reused to the regular landfill. Data from the Environmental Protection Ministry suggests that Israel produces 85,000 tones of electronic waste a year.
So far the private sector, such as the Israeli company Snunit Recycling, has filled the void in Israel’s recycling infrastructure, collecting and disassembling e-waste for recycling.
But such businesses have only scratched the surface of what is needed. Only 5% of all the e-waste produced in the Middle East is properly recycled, and most of that recycling occurs outside the region.
Amit Bracha, executive director of Israel Union for Environmental Defense (Adam Teva V’Din), referred to this bill as part of an Israeli “recycling revolution.”
But for those of us on the ground, we’ve already seen inspiring citizen involvement in stark contrast to the minimalist, mismanaged government recycling programs.
Image of repurposed imac via Wikimedia Commons