Wisconsin Consumers Still Not Recycling Electronics

Wisconsin has had an electronics recycling law in place since 2009, however a new survey shows only 40% of the state population reports being aware of the E-Cycle Wisconsin program.


The DNR has conducted three statewide household surveys since 2006 asking residents what they have done with unwanted electronics, how many electronics are in their homes, what makes it difficult to recycle electronics and other related questions.

The results have been summarized in a report, with particular focus on the 2011 and 2010 surveys.

Over half of 2011 survey respondents were not aware of E-Cycle Wisconsin program and some admit to putting old electronics in the trash, which has been banned since September 2010.

“The 2011 survey results—which were similar to the 2010 survey—show that neither income nor setting (urban/rural location) makes a statistically significant difference in awareness of the ban or E-Cycle Wisconsin. Age, however, does matter. Older residents are more aware of the ban and E-Cycle Wisconsin than younger residents. There is also noticeable variation in awareness across regions of the state, with the DNR’s Southeast and Northern regions having the lowest awareness of both the ban and E-Cycle Wisconsin.”The report’s main conclusion is that more outreach about the program is necessary because, as one would expect, people who have heard of the program are more likely to use it than those who have not.

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