Unedited press release follows:
PANASONIC IS FIRST ELECTRONICS MANUFACTURER TO SPONSOR THE STATE ELECTRONICS CHALLENGE
SECAUCUS, NJ (October 13, 2010) – Panasonic Corporation of North America, in its commitment to be a leader in environmental sustainability, is the first electronics manufacturer to sponsor the State Electronics Challenge, a voluntary program that encourages state, regional, and local governments, including schools and other public entities, to purchase greener electronics, reduce the impacts of said products and manage obsolete electronics safely.
“We are delighted to have Panasonic’s support and participation in the State Electronics Challenge, as it is important to have powerful resources and leaders to help government and agencies to address the importance of proper electronics,” State Electronics Challenge Program Manager, Lynn Rubinstein, said. “Panasonic has always been a leader among electronics manufacturers to develop innovative environmental initiatives, such as the green procurement standard for computer equipment—the Electronics Product Environmental Assessment Tool, and the first collaborative effort by manufacturers to provide take-back recycling programs for electronics through founding MRM, the Electronic Manufacturers Recycling Management Company.”
The State Electronics Challenge (SEC) recognizes that collectively, state and local government purchase more than $35 billion* worth of technology equipment annually, and there is an opportunity to provide leadership in the environmentally sound and cost-effective management of electronic assets. The SEC helps state, local, and regional government and agencies to become leaders and face the new challenges posed by this waste stream. The SEC primarily targets desktop and laptop/portable computers, computer monitors, and computer peripherals.
“Panasonic is committed to being environmentally responsible and ensuring that electronics are managed appropriately at end-of-life and being part of the States Electronics Challenge allows us to work closely with the government at all levels to ensure it is done right,” said David Thompson, Director, Corporate Environmental Department, Panasonic Corporation of North America. “Beyond our participation in the State Electronics Challenge, we announced a goal to grow Panasonic’s nationwide recycling program to include at least 800 convenient drop-off sites by next year. To date, Panasonic has recycled more than 20 million pounds of electronics – a huge feat and a proud accomplishment for our company.”
Panasonic founded MRM (Electronic Manufacturers Recycling Management Company, LLC), together with Sharp and Toshiba, and in 2009, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) declared the joint venture the first-ever winner of the “Plug-In To eCycling TV Recycling Challenge” Award. MRM was awarded the honor over other programs on the basis of its partnerships, innovation, longevity, consumer outreach, accessibility, pounds of TVs collected and ability to ensure that responsible recycling practices are followed. In making the award, the EPA cited MRM’s “wide reach” and “different approaches to collecting TVs, including working with charities and self-storage units.” Since MRM was established in 2007, the company has been responsible for recycling more than 61 million pounds of electronics.
*National Association of Purchasing Officials: Buying Smart: State Procurement Saves Millions
Based in Secaucus, NJ, Panasonic Corporation of North America markets a broad line of digital and other electronics products for consumer, business and industrial use. The company is the principal North American subsidiary of Panasonic Corporation (NYSE: PC) of Osaka, Japan, and the hub of Panasonic’s U.S. branding, marketing, sales, service and R&D operations. Panasonic is pledged to practice prudent, sustainable use of the earth’s natural resources and protect our environment through the company’s Eco Ideas programs.
About the State Electronics Challenge
The State Electronics Challenge is a program of the Northeast Recycling Council, Inc, (NERC), located in Brattleboro, Vermont. NERC’s mission is to advance an environmentally sustainable economy by promoting source and toxicity reduction, recycling, and the purchasing of environmentally preferable products and services. The SEC is supported by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, including its regional offices in New England, Denver, and the Great Lakes, and private sector sponsors. Participation in the SEC is now open to state, regional, and local government agencies in 22 states and will soon expand nationally.