Just last month, Videocon, the last cathode ray tube (CRT) manufacturer using old CRT glass to make new TVs and computer monitors, said they’d continue consuming old CRTs for the next handful of years. Skeptics wondered how long this last bastion for the heavy, outdated technology would actually last with superior flat-panel technology having dominated the market for years.
On November 28th, Videocon representatives announced that they’ll likely be making new CRT products for only one more year. As recently as 2012, Videocon was shipping 9 million CRTs per year, down from 15 million in 2010.
Responsible electronics recyclers in the US have relied heavily on Videocon as a ‘pure’ recovery option, making new products from old. The pending loss of Videocon as a downstream for US recyclers is a wake up call for all:
- Organizations with old CRT products must assume the true cost of responsibly recycling CRTs make informed decisions when recycling CRTs.
- Recyclers must find new markets with a limited number of recycling options available.
- Federal and state governments must enforce the CRT Rule and provide aggressive incentives for development of alternative recovery technologies.