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Environmental Watchdogs Confused By E-Waste Practices 113

Posted by timothy
from the loudest-voices dept.
retroworks writes with a California-centric story that might have parallels in other states, too: "The Sacramento Bee digs further into the controversy over E-Waste exports, and finds that environmental watchdogs doth protest too much. Remember how we were all urged to use a 'Pledge' Signing company to properly recycle our old computers and televisions? Remember how companies which didn't 'Pledge' were accused of exporting toxic poisons by groups like Basel Action Network? The Bee's Tom Knudson discovered that some of the loudest Pledge recycling companies used the exact same exporting brokers as BAN was attacking as 'worst actors.' One California firm exported 6.9 million pounds of raw electronics through the same export market which the environmental 'watchdog' attacked earlier this year... Whether or not the export market was ok to begin with, or continues to be unacceptable, the watchdogs still want to be the experts of who is the best 'e-waste' recycling company. Credibility, RIP."
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Environmental Watchdogs Confused By E-Waste Practices

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  • Balance. (Score:4, Interesting)

    by MrQuacker (1938262) on Friday December 03, 2010 @11:58PM (#34441390)
    What's the issue here? China makes cheap crap, we use it and send it back. Let the toxins go back to where they were created.
    • For me, the real issue is that nobody ever, and I mean ever, blames the recyclers for their sins. It's always the American company that's at fault. This has strong elements of racism as it implies only we "good people" have the power to choose, and we can only expect those "bad people" in China to expose workers to toxic wastes. It's just what "those people" do, sort of like the fable of the scorpion and the frog.

      • by Sulphur (1548251)

        Frog, a State Worker, was due to retire at full pay at the time of his demise.

        A man in a boat rescued Scorpion and retrieved Frog.

        The Trial Court ruled that there was no crime since there were no witnesses, and Frog had failed to file charges in a timely manner.

        Scorpion moved in with Frog's widow and became a famous chef whose signature dish was Tadpole Sauce Picante.

    • by drinkypoo (153816)

      Let the toxins go back to where they were created.

      Are you new? When we send PVC-jacketed copper wire back to china, some peasant squatting in the dirt somewhere is setting it on fire? And then the emissions (when PVC burns you create dioxin, among other nasties) get picked up by the jet stream and sent right back to the US of A.

    • The Australian Broadcasting Corporation's Foreign Correspondent ran a documentary on china's mass production. I'll leave people to draw their own conclusions on the matter.

      The youtube (Aussies can see it on the foreign correspondent website [abc.net.au] as well - it's called "Dirty Secrets") video is here, split into Part 1 [youtube.com] and Part 2 [youtube.com]
      • Interesting show, thanks for the link.

        Everyone is to blame at part. But the fact is still that its their problem, they caused it. They put the economy above all else, and now they are paying the price for it.

        In the USA and Europe we are also paying for it. We let it happen and now its back to hurt us. From shoddy products that kill people, to the loss of jobs and skills, and in the reduced air quality that gets blown our way.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Saturday December 04, 2010 @12:03AM (#34441406)

    Short insight from a former insider - the problem is huge, the middle men working to facilitate the process are abundant, the business model is quick, simple, and lucrative. Unfortunately it robs us of our responsibility to the planet as well as an entire necessary industry we should be advancing, that is the safe deconstruction and recycling of modern devices. It's a messy situation. But nothing modern engineering couldn't design around, and I think in the long run we could craft very clean, efficient methods of dealing with a lot of this "waste". Yes, we have some growth in this area, but the problem is that it's still too expensive. Stateside recyclers charge somewhere between $10-80 dollars per cathode ray tube handled, whereas most waste brokers who ship overseas will pay you, something like $20-50 a pallet (of I think 36). The most unfortunate part is that customers here really do have an interest in doing things correctly, they just don't often have a budget for it and shop on promises but also price.

    • by LynzM (1240854)
      That absolutely makes sense. If we can engineer the *how* of how to build the products (and really, now, how many consumer products that are being "thrown out" are cutting edge?), we absolutely should be able to design the how to deconstruct and reuse the products.
      • by kdemetter (965669)

        Recylcing should actually be very lucrative , because you get payed twice : they pay you for taking the waste , and then after you process it , you can sell the resulting endproduct.

        • by Neoprofin (871029)
          It is and it isn't.

          Computers and servers are solid gold. Scrap metal, high quality circuit boards, gold and silver contacts, large amounts of aluminum. Old TVs, monitors, even LCDs and plasmas are at best a break even proposition because the majority of their weight is plastic and materials that are expensive or at the current time impossible to recycle. Things like keyboards and mice contain almost nothing of value to fund their disposal, same with modern office and home homes and dozens of other produ
      • by Neoprofin (871029)
        We have a how, it's just not cost effective to compete against a work force that makes 0 wages with 0 safety controls. Toxic waste is really cheap to deal with if you're not concerned with safety, not so much if you are.
        • by LynzM (1240854)
          Agreed. Capitalism at work is sometimes (often?) short-sighted, and a frustrating thing to watch...
          • by Neoprofin (871029)
            It only works if everyone plays by the same rules.

            Take away my American card if you must. :(
  • I don't get it... (Score:4, Interesting)

    by martas (1439879) on Saturday December 04, 2010 @12:12AM (#34441448)
    I'm thoroughly humbled by the fact that I have no friggin idea what the summary is saying. Can someone explain this to me in simple terms?
    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by Anonymous Coward

      Environmental watchdogs say "Company A uses practice X, which is bad. Company B uses practice Y, which is good." In reality, both companies use practice X.

      • by hey! (33014)

        True, but what was confusing was the bizarre air of smugness in the summary, as if the author of the summary had personally caught the Sierra Club with its fingers in the cookie jar, profiting from dumping eWaste in China.

        The big story is that eWaste that cannot be disposed of in California is being exported, often to China where very sloppy, dangerous and polluting methods of recovering just a few of the most valuable materials. This is hardly news; anybody who has cared enough to look into what happens t

    • by larry bagina (561269) on Saturday December 04, 2010 @12:19AM (#34441486) Journal

      A man had two sons, and he came to the first, and said, 'Son, go work today in my vineyard.' He answered, 'I will not,' but afterward he changed his mind, and went. He came to the second, and said the same thing. He answered, 'I go, sir,' but he didn't go. Which of the two did the will of his father?

      • Re: (Score:2, Funny)

        by arth1 (260657)

        A man had two sons, and he came to the first, and said, 'Son, go work today in my vineyard.' He answered, 'I will not,' but afterward he changed his mind, and went. He came to the second, and said the same thing. He answered, 'I go, sir,' but he didn't go. Which of the two did the will of his father?

        Irrelevant. The third son said "Screw you and your patriarchial abuse", and had his father arrested for exploiting children for labour.
        The farm was sold, the sons finally received a decent education instead of anecdotal fairy tales, and got laid regularly.

        • by fishexe (168879) on Saturday December 04, 2010 @12:59AM (#34441684) Homepage

          A man had two sons, and he came to the first, and said, 'Son, go work today in my vineyard.' He answered, 'I will not,' but afterward he changed his mind, and went. He came to the second, and said the same thing. He answered, 'I go, sir,' but he didn't go. Which of the two did the will of his father?

          Irrelevant. The third son said "Screw you and your patriarchial abuse", and had his father arrested for exploiting children for labour. The farm was sold, the sons finally received a decent education instead of anecdotal fairy tales, and got laid regularly.

          But on their deathbed, they wept openly and cried out, "I only regret that I never learned the difference between a fairy tale and a parable!"

          • For lack of modpoints I present you with a shiny new Internet which you just won. Well played, Sir.
    • by SheeEttin (899897)
      The watchdog groups:
      • Have no clue what they're talking about, and
      • Are making shit up as they go along.

      Whether or not this applies to other groups or not, I have no idea.

    • by Chuck Chunder (21021) on Saturday December 04, 2010 @12:32AM (#34441544) Homepage Journal

      I'm thoroughly humbled by the fact that I have no friggin idea what the summary is saying. Can someone explain this to me in simple terms?

      As far as I can tell it's about improper handling of e-waste, specifically e-waste was submitted to Slashdot and rather than handling it properly the Slashdot editors just passed the garbage on to it's readers unmodified.

      • by fishexe (168879)

        I'm thoroughly humbled by the fact that I have no friggin idea what the summary is saying. Can someone explain this to me in simple terms?

        As far as I can tell it's about improper handling of e-waste, specifically e-waste was submitted to Slashdot and rather than handling it properly the Slashdot editors just passed the garbage on to it's readers unmodified.

        How is that news? We've all known that for years.

    • by hoytak (1148181)

      After I RTFA, it seems the summary is more FUD than anything else. I have no clear idea how the blogger pulled it out of the main article, and I didn't really feel like RTFB to find out. Perhaps, then, the unintelligibly of the summary is a backwards way to get hits.

    • I don't know the details, but I think it goes something like this:
      Company X says "Sure, we'll take that e-crud you don't want off your hands for the low-low price of $10 per whatever-it-is."
      Company Y says "But we'll recycle that e-crud into something somebody wants, in an environmentally- and worker-sensitive way. That will be . . . $15 please, for a whatever-it-is."
      Company Y proceeds to unload the junk on the same Company Z that Company X uses, thus nullifying the promise and the extra money, and
    • by fishexe (168879)

      I'm thoroughly humbled by the fact that I have no friggin idea what the summary is saying. Can someone explain this to me in simple terms?

      Sure. Do you want a car analogy, or a sex analogy?

      • by martas (1439879)
        How about a car sex analogy?
        • by fishexe (168879)

          How about a car sex analogy?

          So, this one car is humping another car, and he's been warned never to car-hump without a car-condom, so he asks her if she's put a car-condom on her tail pipe and she honks yes, and he feels good about that, but the next day he reads in the paper about a study which conclusively showed that there's no difference between using and not using a car-condom because the car condom literally does nothing. The cars issuing the original warning were basically just making shit up so they could sound important.

    • I'm still trying to work out the "Credibility RIP" line. Does that refer to some pledge, the blogger or Slashdot for reposting such drivel? As a non-Californian, I had no knowledge of the subject matter. But the most obvious thing that I found on my first reading of the summary was that it was it was written in completely biased manner. Without knowing what the story was, I already got wary that I was being preached to, and so I assumed that whatever I was being told was probably not the whole truth.

      On furt

      • Do you not understand "credibility", or is it "RIP" with which you're struggling?

        Maybe there is a third option and you fall into it. Do you not understand that when Organization Z, which has set itself up as the Conscience_of_America with respect to recycling, says Company X is evil for using this practice and we certify that Company Y would never do that, that their assertion must be true? If Organization Z is to have any credibility Company Y must not be using the same evil process as Company X. When i

        • Do you not understand "credibility", or is it "RIP" with which you're struggling?

          Oh please, you are not off to a great start there. That was a stupid bit of juvenile wordplay that (rather ironically) robs your post of credibility. Only people who can't think through a full argument have to resort to this sort of tactic.

          Do you not understand that when Organization Z, which has set itself up as the Conscience_of_America with respect to recycling, says Company X is evil for using this practice and we certify that Company Y would never do that, that their assertion must be true?

          But they didn't certify that Company Y would never do it, merely that the company pledged that they would not do it. Trusting businesses is the weakness in the pledge system, and that is why the group has discontinued the pledge program [e-stewards.org] in favour of a certification progra

          • My bad for not rtfa. I'm not going to register to read. However, even your criticism of my post makes my point.

            The entire basis for Organization Z loudly criticizing Company X was based upon a process Organization Z knew, or should have known, to be completely worthless from the start. Their credibility is therefore dead, even if they assert they are changing their ways. I, for one, would never trust their "certification" as they've already shown their willingness to deliberately use flawed processes so t

            • My bad for not rtfa. I'm not going to register to read.

              I see. Well if you are basing your comments on just the blog entry, then I would suggest that you find a more impartial and informed source. The only reason that you think Basel lost credibility is because you had an unrealistic expectation of what the pledge program was set to achieve. You should think of the program as a stepping stone towards a certification process.

              But a certification process is still only as good as the level of oversight it provides and the punishment that it can dish out to companies

              • You're wrong on all your assumptions about what I said.

                If some organization is going to make themselves THE moral authority on something, and use that position to tell people who they should do business with, then they have a moral responsibility to do things the right way. And, the right way is to not use vetting processes that they know are so flawed they are worthless. To defend them is to defend the indefensible....

                Your defense of Al Gore is funny. Anyone who sets themselves up as an authority on any

    • by hicksw (716194)

      A does naughty things with its shit. Bad A!
      B promises not to do naughty things with its shit. Good B!

      B subcontracts its shit to A. Oh, shit!
      --
      I am not a pretentious idiot, but I play one on the internet.

      • by martas (1439879)
        Dude, you should be a teacher or something... I've never experienced this kind of clarity before! :]
  • but I am confused by the summary.

    • by fishexe (168879)

      but I am confused by the summary.

      It would have been way more useful if they'd defined e-waste. I don't know about you but 90% of my confusion was that the summary used that term which I had never heard before, and once I figured it out the rest all made sense. We use the prefix "e-" in most other contexts to refer to things that exist in electronic form, and in this context people use it to refer to plain old meatspace waste that happens to come from electronics.

      • by Teun (17872)
        For those in the need to know, the recycling industry, this is since many years a well known acronym for Electronics Waste.
        • by lahvak (69490)

          Like recycles electrons?

        • by fishexe (168879)

          For those in the need to know, the recycling industry, this is since many years a well known acronym for Electronics Waste.

          Yes, but Slashdot headlines aren't written for the recycling industry. They're (supposedly) written for the average nerd and if the average nerd doesn't understand a term in the headline it should be defined in the summary.

      • by drinkypoo (153816)

        Anyone who reads the stuff their trash pickup company mails to them knows what e-Waste is, but I guess you thought you were smarter than a bunch of garbage assholes and pitched it straight into the bin?

        • by fishexe (168879)

          Anyone who reads the stuff their trash pickup company mails to them knows what e-Waste is, but I guess you thought you were smarter than a bunch of garbage assholes and pitched it straight into the bin?

          Wow, way to assume that people who don't know everything you know are stuck-up jerks, rather than simply people who've been presented with different information. You'll go far in life with that attitude.

          FYI I don't have a "trash pickup company", but I've read everything the municipal waste department has ever mailed to me, especially about "e-Waste" disposal, and they don't use that term. I've taken several computers and several monitors to be recycled and the folks who take care of that don't use it e

          • by drinkypoo (153816)

            I've read more than a handful of news articles about the matter, none of which referred to it as "e-Waste", but I guess I'm not as hip as your majesty, who seems to know how everything works everywhere in the world.

            Pretty much every article I read on electronic trash from the English speaking world refers to it as e-Waste, so if you truly haven't seen the term then you probably shouldn't be posting on the subject, because it's fucking impossible to avoid if you're paying the least bit of attention. Why do people who don't know shit bother to post except to ask questions? "Oh, I've never heard that, so it must be false, it can't possibly be that I have been hiding under a rock. I can't be crazy, it has to be everyone e

            • by fishexe (168879)

              Pretty much every article I read on electronic trash from the English speaking world refers to it as e-Waste,

              Unless the articles you've read include every article ever written on the subject, this isn't really relevant to the articles I've read which were the topic at issue.

              so if you truly haven't seen the term then you probably shouldn't be posting on the subject, because it's fucking impossible to avoid if you're paying the least bit of attention.

              Or maybe I've been paying attention but the world is bigger than one person's individual experience, and in some places they don't use the same terminology?

              "Oh, I've never heard that, so it must be false, it can't possibly be that I have been hiding under a rock. I can't be crazy, it has to be everyone else."

              You're the only person in this thread who's using that sort of reasoning. Most importantly, I never said anything was false simply because I hadn't heard it; I said your statements about my

    • That's because it's inscrutable.

      Literally the only reason I'm reading the comments is to see if people are as confused by that seemingly random string of words. I mean I know they form sentences, and I understand it involves something with waste (what the FUCK is e-waste?) and possibly the environment(?) but it's like one of those things you read about in scifi or fantasy books where as you read it it bewitches you into forgetting the last few words you just read.

  • Seems that in general, environmental problems in other countries simply go by "out of sight, out of mind." Solar panel production is another example of this.

    Unfortunately, it's hard to tell what these days marketed as environmentally friendly is genuinely good for the environment and what is a marketing ploy by corporations getting on the latest bandwagon. Kudos to watchdog groups like this one that have a hope of exposing groups who are simply going for the bottom line.

  • by Megahard (1053072) on Saturday December 04, 2010 @12:29AM (#34441524)
    One of the best places is ACCRC [accrc.org]. Usable stuff is refurbished for charity organizations, schools, etc. and the rest is handled responsibly and locally by ECS Refining [ecsrefining.com] in Santa Clara. Small fees are charged since this isn't as cheap/profitable as sending it overseas. But in the past they've taken stuff for free on Earth Day (April 22) so I save my small circuit boards and cables till then. The bottom line: do your own research. Especially if a recycler is eager to take anything and everything for free.
    • by hedwards (940851)
      Depends where you are. I thought that CA had a fee that was attached to the purchase of things like monitors and computers to cover that. Up here, we make the manufacturers pay, the end result is largely the same the consumer pays, we just give the manufacturers more ability to find an efficient way of meeting our requirements.
      • by Megahard (1053072)
        Yes, CA has a fee attached to buying TVs and monitors (only) so ACCRC doesn't charge a fee for those as they get their money from the state.
    • One of the best places is ACCRC [accrc.org]. Usable stuff is refurbished for charity organizations, schools, etc. and the rest is handled responsibly and locally by ECS Refining [ecsrefining.com] in Santa Clara

      Unlike the "normal" e-waste companies who take hardware and ship it Chindifrica to places where kids melt components off PCBs over an open fire [google.com], ACCRC actually does it right.

      My God, has it really been 5 Thanksgivings since I wrote my Alice's Restaurant [slashdot.org] parody in response to a comment on a Slashdot post on "Whose Burden is it to

    • Are there any similar organisations that will be willing to donate stuff to schools in the third world? A private school but with low fees and doing a lot of good for the town its in.

    • by Relayman (1068986)
      The gist of this story is that, unless you have personally audited ECS Refining, you really have no idea what they're doing with the stuff that they get.

  • Welcome to the new business model in America. We spin it the way you want it, and then by the time you've bought it, it's entirely too late. The only people/persons without accountability are those who have money. Geeee, I wonder who made it that way, maybe those with money...? Just because most are like that doesn't mean all are.
    I remember a time in which credibility was a virtue amongst men, or was that just my perception?
    Let us tip our glasses at the new era: unscrupulous. Last one out turn the li
    • New era? We are deep in this shit for decades now. It might be nostalgia, but I guess the time of credible people in management positions was a very short one - after the robber baron capitalism was reigned in and before the globalized mega-capitalism was let loose. The only examples of businessmen with any moral fibre seem to stem from that period - and then only in owner-operated businesses.
  • by Animal Farm Pig (1600047) on Saturday December 04, 2010 @01:25AM (#34441742)

    E-Waste that gets shipped to China and other places, sometimes ends up handled by facilities without adequate worker protection and polluting the environment. The journo doesn't provide any real information of what percentage of waste ends up handled in this way and how much is handled in a responsible manner. Nor does he make any mention of how Chinese law regards these activities. China is mentioned only as a bogeyman.

    Oh, look! Someone right here in the good old USA has found a solution! Yay! The Chinese bogeyman can be defeated! But, wait... there are some fly-by-night operators who don't want to embrace this triumph of American ingenuity. Obviously, those fly-by-night folks are just looking for a quick buck while the larger businesses are really looking out for the environment.

    Therefore, we should pass some kind of law to prevent export of e-waste. The large businesses that can afford to vertically integrate (through capital expenditures on the machinery for e-waste processing [NB: Investment in jobs vs machinery is related to cost of labor {Where labor is cheap (China, global south), work is done by workers. Where workers are expensive (USA, EU, etc.), work is done by machines}]) obviously have environmental interests at heart (never commercial interests.)

    So, the article offers a problem (hellish conditions in some places receiving electronics exports from the USA), and offers a solution (requiring the processing of waste in the USA). Who will benefit from this? The large, vertically integrated e-waste companies in the USA. Who will lose? 1) All of the small e-waste collectors who will now be forced to sell their raw e-waste to the large domestic operators, and 2) all of the foreign e-waste processing centers.

    The end result would be that all e-waste would be processed through a small number very rich e-waste processors. The barrier to entry (through investment in machinery and whatever certification process they create) will be so high and the economies of scale so large that perhaps 3 big companies will be processing all US e-waste if it's export were banned.

    How much do you want to bet that some actors in the e-waste marketplace who aspire to be larger processors put something in the ear of the journalist?

  • eWaste: Dispose your old bits here for recycling. Only you can prevent bitrot.
    • by pnutjam (523990)
      ejklfajdlfakjerif#()!@(U@)FJKSLD:FKDJAKLSDJKLASDJTaj31ojk1ladflkjakldf!!4123553109 ------- thanks
  • I gave up using the "delete" key years ago, because I didn't want my discarded ASCII characters ending up in some landfill, leaching into the groundwater, or worse, drifting in the ocean, endangering the wildlife. So now, when I make a typo, I just "cut" the character(s) with ^X, and move it into a character composting file I keep for that purpose; when I need new characters, rather than create them from scratch, (with all the attendant resource losses) I simply move it from the composting file to whatever
  • by Neoprofin (871029) <neoprofin@NOspam.hotmail.com> on Saturday December 04, 2010 @02:16AM (#34441906)
    The problem here is the same faced by any industry. Programs like eStewardship are voluntary programs and not subject to legal enforcement so the field is potentially ripe with opportunity to defraud your customers with higher processing fees for all the added expense of being green. It's largely a marketing tool on both ends and I'm sure there are plenty of people in the industry who see it as nothing but.

    However, there are plenty of people who do take this very seriously, and it's unfortunate that our credibility is being tarnished. Sadly there's little that can be done about it, auditing processes will catch companies that merely don't meet the standards, but there's nothing that can be done about those who intentionally falsify records or aim for loopholes.

    I can only recommend that those looking to be rid of their hardware do their due diligence, there's no reason a company shouldn't able be to provide a list of their downstream processors by name or offer you a tour of their facilities.
    • That is why as soon as any industry proposes a voluntary self-regulation scheme, I instantly know they are big fat liars. Never has worked, never will. The majority of businesses within that industry will cheat, the few honest ones will get the disadvantage, in the end we have every major player cheating.
      • by Neoprofin (871029)
        I think you're confusing industries that propose self regulation as an alternative to government regulation (the meat industry) with an industry that is in many cases actively pushing for greater government regulation and is already under the eye of the EPA, DOT, DNR, and OSHA for more things than you'd imagine.

        They are not self regulating themselves to some legal standard, they are self regulating to a moral standard that is completely unenforceable by law.
    • by evilviper (135110)

      Sadly there's little that can be done about it, auditing processes will catch companies that merely don't meet the standards, but there's nothing that can be done about those who intentionally falsify records or aim for loopholes.

      In fact there is no end to what can be done about it...

      My first thought would be to simply include large dollar amounts in the contract to be payable upon breach... You have to sign it to be certified, and no matter how lacking criminal laws are about eWaste, the civil courts stil

  • by ZDRuX (1010435)
    [rant]
    This is just more proof that all this "green" propaganda is nothing more than a ruse created to lure well intentioned people into accepting useless and rather expensive means to reduce waste for no other reason than to appease some sort of personal jealousy they have for using the earth's resources in ways that are frowned upon by some of these organizations that have seemingly popped up over night and are invading your towns and regulatory bodies all over the country.

    Time and time again we see so
    • by wampus (1932)

      While I don't agree 100% with your sentiments, I did realize that there was something horribly wrong with the "green" movement in consumer goods while cleaning my toilet. I was using the same nasty cleaner as always, with an entire panel of the bottle covered in horrible shit that might happen if I don't follow the instructions... but this time it had an "eco-friendly" logo on the front. What the happy fuck does eco-friendly have to do with horribly caustic mint flavored shit-streak remover?

      • What the happy fuck does eco-friendly have to do with horribly caustic mint flavored shit-streak remover?

        It must not be that bad if you found out it tastes like mint and still capable of talking about it.

      • by drinkypoo (153816)

        What the happy fuck does eco-friendly have to do with horribly caustic mint flavored shit-streak remover?

        I think "green" is stupid and "eco-friendly" is retarded but at least accurate, but please, it's clear that the cleaner can be more or less eco-friendly both before you get it (energy cost of production, byproducts) and once you have it in your hands (will it break down in the environment/primary sewage treatment?)

        Are you trying to be funny? Because, no.

        • by wampus (1932)

          The point was that it was the same exact product in the same bottle, with a new little logo and a blurb full of weasel words about perhaps helping the planet maybe. And I'm sorry you don't find my comments funny. I'll try to be dryer in the future.

  • How about none of our e-waste leaves the country so we can reclaim as many of the rare earth elements as we can before handing things back to Asia.

  • Personally I thought the story was about the amount of corruption in businesses who did their best to hide all their dodgy practises.
    Granted this isn't a tick for the watchdogs but don't make it out to be about poor business being attacked by greeny loonies.

  • by glwtta (532858)
    Remember how we were all urged to use a 'Pledge' Signing company to properly recycle our old computers and televisions?

    No?
  • ..not as I do.

    Not following ones own advise does not make the advise any worse. Those things should be judged by their content, not by messengers.
  • It won't let me. (Score:4, Insightful)

    by Posting=!Working (197779) on Saturday December 04, 2010 @09:23AM (#34443114)

    I have mod points, but for some reason it won't let me mod the summary as troll.

    There have been some bias in articles before, but this one goes off the hook. A scumbag company lies to everyone and scams them, but it's all the environmentalists fault for falling for the same scam everyone else did?

    • by Bigjeff5 (1143585)

      What's the point if the environmentalists don't do any kind of checking up on the companies?

      Their support shouldn't be based on a pledge to do good, their support should be based on whether or not they are actually doing good.

      Then said environmentalists want to be considered the experts on which companies are good for the environment.

      What a joke.

      This reminds me of the time Greenpeace was hit with massive fines for dumping waste of the US coast, which violates EPA regulations.

    • by evilviper (135110)

      scumbag company lies to everyone and scams them, but it's all the environmentalists fault for falling for the same scam everyone else did?

      No, its their fault for putting a system in place to certify companies as "non-scumbags", but having NO VERIFICATION AT ALL that they are doing what they've said they do. That their own waste ends up trashing the environment is just perfectly ironic, and keeps them from weasling out by blaming some 3rd party, since it was all them.

      Nobody forced them to come up with their

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