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Responsible Recycling© (R2)

Over the past decades the growth of consumer electronics has inspired an unsuspected industry: electronic recycling, or e-scrap, which processes discarded electrical or electronic devices, and the waste of OEMs.

The practice of refurbishing, de-manufacturing, recycling, and reusing electronics and potential toxic contaminants brings with it possible health and environmental risks. Countries around the world are mandating specific recycling practices to protect workers and communities, and are demanding strict internal monitoring of the processes within organisations.

Key Benefits

Reduce Environmental Impacts

Demonstrate your commitment to improving environmental performance and reducing the impact on developing countries.

Improve Worker Health and Safety

Protect your workers with robust health and safety practices.

Drive Competitor Advantage

Provide confidence to your customers that you can consistently meet their expectations in maintaining data security.

Protect the Recycling Chain

Reduce faults or failures along the recycling chain through gradual de-manufacturing or refurbishment of products.

What Is It?

The R2 Governing Council manages the content of The Responsible Recycling© (R2) Standard.

The goal of the Standard is to create a voluntary, market-based mechanism for ensuring best practices. It also provides essential information/assurance to prospective customers.The standard builds on an ISO style Plan-Do-Check-Act management system as a platform, and integrates:
  • Environmental, health and safety management
  • Media sanitisation
  • Export and disposal restrictions
  • Chain of custody accountability
  • Transportation controls
The result is a comprehensive standard addressing the specific concerns of the e-waste recycling and refurbishment industries.
Why is the Standard Necessary?

The health, safety and environmental impacts that result from this waste stream are significant.

Toxic waste stream – This complex waste stream contains many toxins, such as mercury, lead, cadmium and certain brominated flame retardants.

Impact on developing countries – Illegal export of this waste to developing countries is a common practice, and causes significant harm.

Data security concerns – Data in the memory devices of electronic equipment is sensitive. It is essential that electronics recycling ensures that data security and privacy requirements are managed responsibly.

Why is the Certification Program Important?

The certification program is important because it provides a mechanism for managing and communicating commitment for:

  • Leadership in operations, safety and environmental performance
  • Accountability for e-waste to final disposition
  • Data security
Who can Become R2 Certified?

The R2 Standard has been designed to serve recyclers, which includes but is not limited to electronics resellers, refurbishers, recyclers, demanufacturers, asset recoverers, brokers, as well as leasing companies that engage in these activities.

Assuring Confidence

The accredited certification program has been developed by a multi-stakeholder group consisting of: the U.S. EPA; regulators from state agencies; electronic recyclers, refurbishers and their trade associations; OEMS/customers of electronic recycling services; NGOs. ANSI-ASQ National Accreditation Board (ANAB) provides oversight of the independent R2 Certification Bodies (CBs), who in turn assure a recycler’s conformity to the Standard.

CBs must continually demonstrate to ANAB that they operate in accordance to the requirements of:

  • ISO 17021© Conformity assessment –Requirements for bodies providing audit and certification of management system
Who Can Certify to a R2 System?

Only recognized certification bodies can provide R2 certification. No unaccredited certifications or claims of system conformity are permitted.  Certification to the program requires at least an annual independent audit. 

QMI-SAI Global is a recognized certification body that can provide R2 certification. 

In June 2011, ANAB accredited QMI-SAI Global for R2, further increasing the options for those electronics recyclers seeking certification to the R2 Standard.  John Fraser, Product Manager for Environment at QMI-SAI Global notes the firm, “is pleased to have received this recognition from ANAB, our accreditation body.   We’re excited to offer R2 certification to our existing customer base and the electronics recycling market through our audits that focus on the integrity of the standard and the needs of business to continually improve.”  Fraser notes that offering certification services for R2, “complements the wide range of environmental, health and safety and quality audits we’ve been offering industry for over 25 years in North America.”

Next Steps

We can help you organisation implement or optimise Responsible Recycling© (R2).

  • Purchase the Standard
  • Conduct a Gap Assessment of your current systems against the R2© requirements
  • Contact SAI Global to discuss requirements, timeframes and costs
  • Perform an optional pre-assessment
  • Perform a gap analysis
    • Undertake a Stage 1 audit
    • Complete a detailed Stage 2 audit
      • Conduct Surveillance Audits of 1/4 of your EOHSMS every 6 months, or 1/2 every year
      • Establish a continual improvement culture
        • Market for brand and promotional benefits
        • Optimise commercial teams
        • Ensure shareholder and stakeholder awareness

          Responsible Recycling© Sector Specific Scheme Requirements

          Upon selection of SAI Global as your Registrar and submission of the signed Application for Certification, SAI Global will assign your dedicated service team to meet your industry needs.