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HOUSEHOLD WILLINGNESS TO RECYCLE ELECTRONIC WASTE - An Application to California

  • Author(s): Saphores, Jean-Daniel M
  • Nixon, Hilary
  • Ogunseitan, Oladele A
  • Shapiro, Andrew A
  • et al.
Abstract

Electronic waste (e-waste) has become the main contributor of lead (Pb) to landfills in the U.S. (EPA 2000). Households also store large volumes of e-waste, yet little is known about their willingness to recycle e-waste. This paper starts filling this gap based on a 2004 mail survey of California households. Using multivariate models, we find that gender, education, convenience, and environmental beliefs, but not income or political affiliation, are key factors explaining the willingness to drop-off e-waste at recycling centers. A comparison of an ordered probit with a semi-nonparametric extended ordered probit model of the survey responses shows that the latter better predicts less frequent answers. Our results suggest targeting public education programs about recycling at teenagers or younger adults, and making recycling more convenient for older adults; moreover, e-waste drop-off centers should first be created in communities that already offer curbside collection programs for conventional recyclable products.

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