ISRI’s Electronics Division has been instrumental to the development and growth of R2. Companies including HiTECH, Regency Technologies, Arcoa, and many others stepped up and provided significant early financial support. Individuals including Bill Long, Joe Clayton, Rike Sandlin, Julius Hess, and many others have donated countless hours to the initial development of and subsequent revisions to the R2 Standard.
For the past twelve years I have had the good fortune to work with these companies and individuals on R2, first as the “facilitator” of the multi-stakeholder negotiation through which the R2 Standard was originally developed and then as the executive director of the R2 “housing body” – initially called R2 Solutions and now called SERI (Sustainable Electronics Recycling International). Next month I am stepping down as executive director; it’s time for someone new to take R2 to the next level, to make it a truly international standard.
We – all that have contributed – have accomplished so much. 786 electronic recycling facilities are currently R2 certified and 23% of them are located outside the United States. When the first facility was certified in early 2010, no one would have predicted such rapid growth. And while we can’t quantify it, perhaps more significant is the number of customers, particularly multinational corporations that are now requiring R2 of their ITAD and recycling partners.
SERI’s excellent, highly-committed staff has been working diligently to effectively manage this growth. This has entailed working with the certification bodies, training the auditors (currently there are close to 90), and conducting oversight activities to monitor the work of the auditors and the conformance of certified companies. We are also continually working to improve SERI’s databases and other internal systems to accommodate the program’s growth and enhance SERI’s capabilities to effectively manage and oversee it.
There is also the R2 Technical Advisory Committee’s (TAC’s) work on revising the R2 Standard. The industry is growing and with that comes new business models, new arrangements with, and new services for customers, some of which were not envisioned and cannot be accommodated under the current version of the standard. The TAC currently is exploring whether, and if so, how R2 can address these new models, arrangements, and services. This is difficult and arduous work. I can’t express strongly enough my appreciation and respect for each TAC member; they volunteer so much time and are so committed to R2.
Thank you Electronics Division members for all the support for R2 over the years. In fact, thanks to all in the industry who have supported R2 in so many ways. Here’s to the continued growth and success of R2!
By John Lingelbach, Executive Director of SERI
eScrap Beat Main