Friday, April 10, 2015

TOP STORY >> E-cycling opportunity

Leader staff writer

The Regional Recycling and Waste Reduction District, in partnership with eSCO Processing and Recycling, launched an electronics pick-up service for non-residential customers in Pulaski County on April 1.

The budget for the program is $100,000 that mostly covers advertising and educational materials, according to Regional Recycling Deputy Director Carol Bevis.

The district bought a $30,000 truck with a $9,000 wrap for the new service, she added.

The contractor, eSCO, has been working with Regional Recycling for three years. It is based in Rogers and has a processing plant in Little Rock, Bevis continued.

Fred Wizer of eSCO said the contractor has hired a full-time driver and doubled its warehouse space from 25,000 square feet to 50,000 square feet for the service.

More staff will be added once business picks up more than it has already, he noted.

“So far, so good,” Wizer said of the pickups. “I expect it’s going to be enormous by the time it’s over with, once the information gets out to the general public. It will set a benchmark for not only central Arkansas but for the rest of the country.

“I expect it to be duplicated,” Wizer said.

Bevis explained that, although the service had been planned for a while, the district waited to make sure it would receive a $250,000 annual grant from the Arkansas Department of Environmental Quality — the same amount awarded for each of the last two years.

She said the district started the program because “we felt like businesses had the quality of materials, electronics that we could recycle better…We felt like we could get more businesses involved if we went and picked up for them.”

Bevis said there are many reasons companies, churches, schools, nonprofits and others should take advantage of the service.

“Unless they have a lot of televisions, it’s a free service,” she explained.

“It’s just economically the best thing to do. Environmentally, it’s the best thing to do. And, when you can do it for free, why not? It’s just good common sense.”

Bevis added, “You don’t have to do anything but dial the number. It clears out your space, and you’re doing the right thing.”

The contractor, eSCO, provides certifications to non-residential customers stating all hard drives have been destroyed. The electronics are then dismantled or refurbished.

Bevis also said electronics contain lead and mercury — hazardous waste that can seep out in landfills. One computer could have five to six pounds of lead in it, she noted.

Electronics also contain “a lot of good raw material” that doesn’t break down in landfills, Bevis said. Recycling them saves space in landfills that is needed for other things.

Call 844-223-3190 or fill out the online form at to schedule an appointment.

Computers, laptops, copiers, servers, fax machines, monitors, TVs, toasters, printers and more will be accepted, although a small disposal fee will be charged for cathode ray tube televisions.

A minimum of two pallets or $75 is required for pickup, a business may be asked to load into Gaylord boxes or palletize items, and a business may be asked to have employees available to help load.

The business must have all materials in one location on the date of pickup and on the ground floor of a high-rise building.

Materials must be convenient to an outside door, and a release of liability is required from the business prior to pickup.

All materials become the property of eSCO once loaded.

Bevis added that there are also residential e-waste drop-off sites in Jacksonville, Sherwood and Maumelle. And Verizon Arena’s VIP parking area is used in the spring and the fall as a special-collection site.

The next event at Verizon Arena is from 8 a.m. until 3 p.m. Tuesday, May 12 through Wednesday, May 13.