Peoria, Illinois – Today the Basel Action Network (BAN) announced that retrievable storage of Cathode Ray Tube (CRT) glass proposed by Kuusakoski Recycling and Peoria Disposal Company is conditionally allowed under the e-Stewards Standard. BAN’s decision follows nearly one year of review of technical information submitted by Kuusakoski/PDC documenting the environmental protectiveness of retrievable storage.
Kuusakoski and PDC appreciate BAN’s thorough review of our petition. The petition was submitted in response to BAN’s suggestion that retrievable storage can provide protected and safe storage of CRT glass, preserving it for future recycling, in addition to market constraints noted over one year ago by BAN and others. BAN’s findings on the petition cited further constriction in CRT glass capacity resulting from a number of market developments over the past year:
- Videocon, the largest market for CRT glass from the U.S. and last known CRT manufacturer using recovered CRT glass, is not accepting CRT glass currently. The primary U.S. supplier to Videocon, TDM, is developing alternative uses for CRT glass. TDM’s uses for CRT glass have not been disclosed, and press reports do not indicate that they are currently operational.
- Camacho, which uses CRT glass in a ceramic tile process in Spain, produces tiles which may test hazardous in the U.S. and are therefore illegal to import to the country. BAN has not determined whether Camacho is an acceptable process for use by e-Stewards recyclers.
- A number of CRT glass processors have improperly, unsafely, and/or illegally managed CRT glass, including recyclers who have gone out of business or been stripped of their certification under the e-Stewards Standard.
- Other companies (including Dlubak, NuLife, and Closed Loop cited by BAN) may be accepting CRT glass but do not have operating processing facilities to recycle the glass. BAN notes this raises serious public health concerns as well as concerns about bankruptcy and abandonment.
- Lead smelters utilizing CRT glass as flux may not be recovering as much of the lead in the glass as the market has been led to believe. BAN proposes to consider lead smelting legitimate recycling only if the smelter can document that 95% or more of the lead in the glass is recovered.
Because of these developments, BAN intends to modify its handling of other “recycling” options under the e-Stewards Standard. In addition to the documentation that must be provided by lead smelters, BAN specifically stated that “Only CRT glass processing facilities that are fully permitted and operational (actively processing glass) can be acceptable destinations for leaded CRT glass, frit, and processing residuals.” Kuusakoski and PDC agree with placing further requirements on purported recyclers of CRT glass, and we appreciate that BAN’s decision clarifies the requirements CRT glass management options must meet to be allowed for use by certified recyclers.
BAN also recognized that Illinois law now allows retrievable storage as a CRT recycling option and other states may be considering the passage of similar laws.
With continued constriction in CRT glass capacity and the changes proposed in implementation of the e-Stewards Standard, even greater pressure is being placed on the CRT glass marketplace. Though one of the findings in BAN’s decision is that retrievable storage is not a form of recycling, BAN’s approval of retrievable storage as a conditionally allowed option supports its conclusions on the need for additional, operating CRT glass capacity. It is important to note that the Kuusakoski/PDC petition did not request BAN to classify retrievable storage as recycling, but sought instead to distinguish it from and make it preferable to disposal because it preserves CRT glass for future recycling. We maintain that this is an important distinction, and one that makes retrievable storage a more preferred option in BAN’s hierarchy.
Given the market developments noted by BAN, it is apparent the Kuusakoski/PDC retrievable storage option is the only currently allowed and available CRT glass management option under the e-Stewards Standard. Glass-to-glass recycling through Videocon is no longer available, lead smelters must submit documentation of their lead recovery before being used, Camacho has not been demonstrated to meet regulatory standards in the U.S. and is not approved by BAN, and other proposed technologies are not permitted and operational. By contrast, Kuusakoski/PDC’s retrievable storage option is permitted and operating today and has the capacity to manage 50,000 tons of CRT glass annually. We encourage recyclers and OEMs to consider Kuusakoski/PDC’s retrievable storage process for management of CRT glass under the e-Stewards Standard.
Contact: Meryl Pestano, Marketing Coordinator