Fair Trade Recycling Summit

How Fair Trade Recycling (WR3A) Works

Used electronics in dumps are a problem everywhere. But they are NOT primarily from recent imports – countries like India which have never allowed used imports have just as many “informal sector” recycling operations as countries which do import.

According to recent research, most of the “junk” waste filmed by activist groups in dumps has been used for decades and was generated in China, Africa, Latin America, etc. The World Bank shows that nations like Nigeria and Egypt each had between 6 and 7 million households with television in 2006. Even new TVs will eventually wear out or be replaced. A ban on exports of affordable used electronics will not stop the generation of e-scrap.

As an alternative, here’s how WR3A’s Fair Trade Recycling program works.

  1. Meet an Overseas Importer Who Needs “good enough” Electronics, for Repair or Reuse.
  2. Find Out Exactly what the Importer Can and Cannot Use; Draft an Agreement.
  3. Negotiate a Price the Importer Will Pay for the Used Electronics as Specified.
  4. Forgive 20%-100% of Value – In Return for Local Takeback and Recycling
  5. Sponsor a “Fair Trade Recycling Ambassador” to for diligence (either before or after the sale – details to follow)

This takes the “Fixers”, “Tinkerer’s”, “Geeks”, “Nerds” and “Refurbishers” in Africa, Asia, and Latin America, and sees them for what they CAN do, not for what they CANNOT do.

This actually funds the “Takeback” system in these countries with the value those markets are willing to pay for. Our “Fair Trade Recycling Ambassador” program recruits from among thousands and thousands of international college and graduate students to knock on doors and follow up on progress.

If you are an Original Equipment Manufacturer, and want to participate by sending brand new product instead of used, that’s fine, just donate back 20%-100% in return for local takeback and recycling, according to WR3A hand disassembly standards and training. Fair Trade Recycling doesn’t accept just used product, we accept off-lease, surplus property, factory recalls and overruns.

If you are an Overseas Buyer, WR3A will keep your membership confidential if you do not choose to advertise your activity. WR3A will help you find markets for your CRT glass, plastic scrap, metals, circuit boards and other Focus Materials you generate from your local takeback and disassembly operation.


Join WR3A to participate