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    An E-Waste Bill for Bahia

    By Keith R | July 23, 2009

    Topics: Electronic/Electrical Equipment, Waste & Recycling | No Comments »

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    I’m on vacation in the Caribbean, with limited internet access (and a damaged laptop) and in any case supposedly ignoring my inbox and not posting.  But I peeked at the web version of my inbox using a relative’s laptop and, seeing a note on this, could not resist a quick post.

    It shows something I have been talking about for quite a while: how legislators in Latin America, particularly within Brazil, trade information on their bills and borrow ideas from one another.

    Just two months after an e-waste bill was introduced in the northeastern Brazilian state of Pernambuco, a remarkably similar bill was just introduced in the state assembly of its neighbor Bahia.  The Pernambuco bill itself seemed to be inspired by a Law on computer-related waste passed last year in the southern state of Paraná.

    Like its counterpart in Pernambuco, the Bahian bill would require producers, distributors and vendors of “informatic equipment” to create and maintain programs for their recovery, recycling and destruction at the end of product life. As in the PR law, “informatics” is not defined, but in Latin America the term usually refers to computers, other IT equipment and their peripherals. Unless the bill is amended to define the term, the scope will be left to the discretion of the state regulatory authority.

    All these firms would be required to make collection services for EOL equipment available in their establishments in Bahia.

    Just like its Pernambuco counterpart, the Bahian bill would derive the sanctions for non-compliance from Brazil’s Consumer Code and place the state’s consumer protection entity* in charge of enforcement.

    _________________

    * In Bahia, consumer protection is not handled by a standalone institute or agency as it is in many states.  Instead Bahia has a Superintendency for Consumer Protection and Defense (PROCON-BA) linked to the State Secretariat of Justice, Citizenship and Human Rights.

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