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The R2 Technical Advisory Committee (TAC) has been meeting regularly via conference call to consider revisions to the R2 Standard.

The TAC is comprised of representatives from regulatory and public interest entities, recyclers/refurbishers, corporate users of electronics recycling services, and technical advisors with a broad-ranging expertise in the industry who share SERI’s vision for safe and sustainable electronics reuse and recycling. The first draft of the revision is currently planned for late 2017, with the release of the final version in 2018, and full implementation by 2020.

Some of the proposed changes under consideration:

•FM Management Plan (Provision 5.a) – Strengthen accountability, transparency, and clarity of the recycling chain. New requirements to ensure that R2 recyclers demonstrate the expertise and capacity of their downstream vendors to process the equipment containing focus materials. The FM management plan would also need to include a flowchart of the downstream recycling chain (moved from Provision 5.e.6).
•Upstream Notifications – Recyclers would be required to notify their upstream customers of changes in the downstream recycling chain.
•Enhanced Tracking – An overhaul of Provision 7 would include more prescriptive requirements to ensure equipment, components, and materials are accurately tracked and received by downstream vendors. Also proposed are requirements that would impose time limits for processing equipment and shipping materials, to ensure the continued flow of equipment through the reuse and recycling process.
•Clarifying Reuse – A rewrite of Provision 6 in a format that will be more understandable and better fit the normal process flow of refurbishers, while still maintaining the same high standards for testing and reuse.

These proposed changes are not yet finalized. Once deliberations are finished and consensus is reached by the R2 TAC, a full draft of the R2 Standard revision will be released for public comment.

In the meantime, suggestions for improving, clarifying or strengthening the R2 Standard are welcome, and may be submitted via the SERI website. The Standards Development web page also includes the list of TAC members if you would like to contact them directly. Additionally, the public is invited to attend the next in-person TAC meeting scheduled for November 7-9, 2017 in Denver, Colorado.

TAC Members have volunteered their time and expertise for the purpose of strengthening and improving the R2 Standard. The issues are difficult and complex. Member participation is appreciated. Reaching consensus is often long and difficult, but the resulting benefit is a final product that is thoroughly vetted and agreeable to the broad community of stakeholders.

Published in the November 2017 Edition of American Recycler News