A Case Discussion on Market-Based Extended Producer Responsibility: The Minnesota Electronics Recycling Act
32 Pages Posted: 28 Nov 2015
Date Written: November 1, 2015
In this article, we analyze the Minnesota Electronics Recycling Act to explore the benefits and potential drawbacks of a market-based Extended Producer Responsibility (EPR) implementation with operational flexibility for manufacturers. Based on publicly available reports and stakeholder interviews we find that the Minnesota Act attains two key goals of market-based EPR (i.e., higher cost efficiencies and substantial landfill diversion); however, this may come at the expense of selective collection and recycling, an increased burden on local governments, and an uneven competitive landscape for some stakeholders. We observe that such concerns arise because of flexibility provisions afforded to manufacturers that allow them to operationalize their EPR compliance with a cost efficiency focus. Thus, we conclude that a critical operational perspective is necessary for anticipating environmental and economic implications of different flexibility provisions associated with market-based EPR policy implementations.
Keywords: E-waste, Extended Producer Responsibility (EPR), Environmental policy, Electrical and electronic equipment, State of Minnesota
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