Many countries have acted sooner and gone much further than the United States in enacting laws and regulations requiring some recycling of materials used in the manufacturing of various products. More densely populated areas, such as Japan and the European Union (EU), are running out of available landfill capacity much quicker than is the United States. As a result, they are mandating recycling to reduce the amount of material going into landfills. Some of these laws affect the computer industry indirectly, such as general restrictions on what can be landfilled, and others directly, such as prohibiting the disposal of CRT monitors.
There are several reasons why you should be aware of recycling regulations in other parts of the world. First, landfill capacity in the United States is not limitless and, sooner rather than later, we will have the same issues as do other areas of the world. Second, many of these regulations impact how products are made by manufacturers that are increasingly global and will, as much as possible, create standard products for all the markets they serve. And third, products made in the United States for sale in these areas will be required to meet increasing strict requirements to support recycling.
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