Used computer equipment is a rapidly growing source of waste in Texas and across the country. The EPA estimates that in 2005, approximately 63 million computers became obsolete, more than tripling the 20 million computers that became obsolete in 1998. While these computers contain valuable resources that can be reused or recycled, historically, rates for reusing and recycling used computer equipment have remained low.
House Bill 2714 which was passed in the 80th Legislative session addresses this problem by requiring computer manufactures that sell in Texas to offer consumers convenient, free recycling on their brands of computer equipment.
The Texas Commission on Environmental Quality (TCEQ) has launched a new statewide website for recycling computer equipment. The site, www.TexasRecyclesComputers.org, will give Texans a simple way to find the recycling options offered by computer manufacturers.
Each manufacturer is responsible only for its own brand(s) of computer equipment. The collection and recycling must be convenient and free at the time of recycling. The rules define computer equipment as:
a desktop computer or laptop, and
an accompanying keyboard and mouse made by the same manufacturer.
The manufacturers are required to offer collection and recycling only for computer equipment purchased primarily for personal or home-business use—regardless of when it was sold; that is, not just computer equipment purchased after September 1, 2008.
By law, you will be responsible for any confidential information left on the computer equipment.