Greening Efforts on and off the Riverbank

Posted December 18, 2008 by Malina

Anyone remotely connected to Pop Culture knows that “going green” has become the buzzword of the moment. For us, relying on nature for our business like we do, being “green” is way more than a flavor-of-the-moment effort, easily co-opted and just as easily thrown away when the winds of marketing change.  Instead, we have an institutionalized attitude of conservation and responsibility, and an internalized commitment to making responsible decisions while also remaining a viable business. This attitude is reflected in everything from our charitable donations, to our recycled building materials to our organic cotton shirts.  We also bring this attitude into our offices–as Roxanne from our booking office reports:

“I am happy to announce that our little office and some of our homes are now e-waste free (for the most part)! Jeremy from Bay Area Recycle came this morning and hauled off:

4 CRT monitors
3 computer battery backups
3-4 keyboards and 2 mice
3 boxes full of cables, cords, and adapters
Paper shredder
Various CD’s and one VHS tape
Computer hard drive

…and probably a few other odds and ends. Here’s some information about the recycling process and why we chose this company:

E-recycling has become a very popular option for people to get rid of their electronics in a safe and environmentally friendly way. It gives us the piece of mind that the chemicals contained within CRT monitors and the remaining plastic pieces won’t end up in landfills, in our water, or burned into the air. The disturbing thing though about E-recycling is many e-recyclers are scammers and items are shipped overseas and disassembled in China and Africa in a way that is detrimental to the environment and exposes workers to highly toxic chemicals. We chose Bay Area Recycle because they guarantee that no items are shipped overseas or in a landfill (he did mention there is a chance about 1% of items they receive may end up in a landfill b/c there are some materials that cannot be recycled).

We also chose this e-recycler because it is located in Walnut Creek so it uses less fuel to come pickup the items. Other recyclers were located in SF or farther and Jeremy offered the pickup for free. He’s also going to provide us with a receipt that the items we got rid of have ended up at the correct disassembly and recycling plants in California. Most of the items are recycled here in CA and a small percentage may have to be sent to another state in the US.

The most important reason we chose this company is that the main computer recycling plant he sends the most toxic items to (CRT monitors, battery backups, hard drives) follows the Basel Action Network (BAN) guidelines and is E-Steward certified and CA State certified. BAN is an organization which tries to confront toxic waste issues across the globe. E-Stewards is a watchdog group which identifies the most responsible recyclers in N. America and has strict guidelines holding e-recyclers accountable for the items they collect ensuring nothing ends up overseas or in a landfill. Bay Area Recycle also follows BAN’s guidelines and is CA State certified as a responsible recycler.

Here are some links:
Basel Action Network
(I recommend watching the 60 minutes video on the homepage for more info)

Thanks to Roxanne for all this info.  We in our River Office will be following your lead. Check out these links to responsibly take care of the “e-waste” in YOUR home and office!  Change starts with you, man.


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