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RCRA toxicity characterization of discarded electronic devices

TitleRCRA toxicity characterization of discarded electronic devices
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2006
AuthorsMusson SE, Vann KN, Jang YC, Mutha S, Jordan A, Pearson B, Townsend TG
Journal TitleEnvironmental Science & Technology
AbstractThe potential for discarded electronic devices to beclassified as toxicity characteristic (TC) hazardous wasteunder provisions of the Resource Conservation and RecoveryAct (RCRA) using the toxicity characteristic leachingprocedure (TCLP) was examined. The regulatory TCLPmethod and two modified TCLP methods (in which deviceswere disassembled and leached in or near entirety)were utilized. Lead was the only element found to leachat concentrations greater than its TC limit (5 mg/L). Thirteendifferent types of electronic devices were tested usingeither the standard TCLP or modified versions. Every devicetype leached lead above 5 mg/L in at least one test andmost devices leached lead above the TC limit in a majorityof cases. Smaller devices that contained larger amountsof plastic and smaller amounts of ferrous metal (e.g., cellularphones, remote controls) tended to leach lead above theTC limit at a greater frequency than devices with more ferrousmetal (e.g., computer CPUs, printers).
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