The recycling of computer hardware and peripherals is an ongoing issue, as governments in the Western world have yet to put strict regulations in place regarding the disposal of technology waste. In the East, Japan's Recycling Promotion Law was enacted in 1991 to promote increased recycling of a variety of products and materials. One of the law's major goals was the promotion of product designs that facilitate waste reduction, recycling and reuse. In 2001, the law was revised to address personal computers.
INFORM, an organization that studies innovative technologies, practices and products that provide practical solutions to complex environmental and health-related problems, has released a research paper on PC Recycling in Japan. It details how Japan's industries implemented these laws, how they are financed and how the collection process is achieved.
This is certainly one model to follow. Ask yourself, is this something that could happen in the United States?
For more resources on computer recycling, check out the Knowledge Network's E-Waste Recycling and Green Technology resource page, which contains more documents, stories and outside Web links.
Also, look at INFORM's Community Waste Prevention Toolkit-Computers, uploaded recently in the Knowledge Network.