In the Q2-2016 edition of INSIGHT, readers were encouraged to become familiar with and support H.R. 5579, the Secure-E-waste Export Recycling Act (SEERA), a bill that was introduced to control the export of electronic waste in order to ensure that such waste does not become a source of counterfeit goods that may reenter military and civilian electronics supply chains. Along with two previous bipartisan bills, H.R. 2284 and H.R. 2791, Responsible Electronics Recycling Act, H.R. 5579 fell short of becoming a law or “died” in the 114th Congress. A bill must be passed by both the House and Senate in identical form and then be signed by the President to become law. Legislation not enacted by the end of a Congress is cleared from the books. On February 7, 2017 H.R. 917: Secure E-Waste Export and Recycling Act, picked up where H.R. 5579 left off and was introduced into the 115th Congress where it was referred to the House Committee on Foreign Affairs.
The federal government and the defense industry are enacting new policies and practices to prevent the introduction of counterfeit components into supply chains along with methods to detect them should they slip through yet, despite several attempts, no federal e-waste recycling mandate currently exists.
Two previous bipartisan bills were introduced which would forbid U.S. companies from exporting e-waste: H.R.2284 - Responsible Electronics Recycling Act (introduced June 22, 2011) and H.R.2791 - Responsible Electronics Recycling Act (introduced July 23, 2013). Both versions of the bill died.
On June 24, 2016 Rep. Gene Green (D-TX) along with Rep. Paul Cook (R-CA) launched a third attempt to stop the flow of electronic waste to China and other countries known for producing counterfeit electronic parts by introducing H.R. 5579, the Secure E-waste Export and Recycling Act (SEERA).
We need broad industry support in order to pass this legislation.
It is 2016: fifteen years since China was admitted to the WTO and the
first counterfeit part was reported to ERAI; a decade since ERAI’s
President made a second trip to China to see firsthand how e-waste was
being used to fuel what has been referred to as a counterfeit
epidemic; and nine years since I wrote ...
Refurbished parts are defined as “parts that have been renovated in an effort to restore them to a ‘like new’ condition, e.g., leaded parts may have had their leads realigned and re-tinned and subjected to cleaning agents and chemical processing”i But what if this “restoration” process also involves altering the part’s surface and remarking?
In recent months ERAI has identified a disturbing trend particularly, but not exclusively, involving Chinese suppliers and service providers, whereby remarked parts are being sold or identified as refurbished. It’s as if these individuals believe they have circumvented the laws that have been broken if they merely identify the parts as refurbished as opposed to new. They have not. Organizations are violating intellectual property right law even if the true nature of the part is disclosed.
Learn how e-waste threatens the US Military and how more stringent waste and recycling policies can reduce the threat posed by counterfeit electronics and pollution and decrease conflicts in war-torn countries.
Why you should read it:
While many reports have cited the impact that e-waste has on the environment, people and children who mishandle the waste and the re-introduction of waste into the supply chain many times as counterfeit parts, this report is the first to attempt to measure the volume of waste using harmonized measurement methods on a global-scale.