A coordinated, national approach to battery recycling is critical to making the large-scale change needed by the industry and environment. For battery recycling to succeed, we also need shared standards and responsibilities across states. Central to this effort is the principle that all those involved in placing batteries into the U.S. market must accept their fair share of responsibility to minimize the environmental costs and assure the marketplace remains vibrant and competitive.

In that spirit, in May 2014, CBR crafted a model all-battery recycling bill in partnership with the nation’s leading major battery stakeholders: the National Electrical Manufacturers Association (NEMA), The Rechargeable Battery Association (PRBA), and Call2Recycle, Inc. The model bill calls for the creation of a framework to manage both single-use and rechargeable batteries at end-of-life.

The model bill embodies six core principles CBR deems essential to a successful battery recycling program. These principles are critical and must be included in any proposed legislation to ensure CBR’s full support.

The Six Principles of CBR’s Battery Recycling Legislation


Positive impact on the environment

Even today, the battery recycling process can take a toll on the environment that may outweigh the benefits if not carried out thoughtfully. CBR supports programs that have a net positive effect on the environment through the reduction of solid waste and recovery of valuable metals and other materials.


Industry led and managed

As the most involved stakeholder, battery industry partners must lead the design and implementation of the nationwide approach to battery recycling.


Shared responsibility and financial sustainability

A battery recycling program will succeed only if everyone plays a responsible role. Producers are a key part of the equation, but active—though not necessarily financial—participation from consumers, retailers, recyclers, and governments is vital in order to ensure the program is financially sustainable and not an undue burden on any one party.


A level playing field

All companies, not just CBR members, that sell batteries in the U.S. marketplace must contribute to the cost of recycling batteries. Those who make and sell consumer products that contain batteries should make informed decisions based on the effects of their battery choices. CBR believes that battery manufacturers—regardless of whether their facilities are domestic or foreign—should support the costs of recycling. If they do not, common sense and basic fairness requires that the product producer or retailer is obligated to support that effort.


Nationally harmonized

CBR’s vision is for a comprehensive battery recycling bill that encompasses both single-use and rechargeable batteries. Different standards for different states add unnecessary complexity, confusion, and cost. All state battery recycling bills should reflect the core tenets of the CBR model bill.


Safe and responsible

CBR is committed to developing recycling programs that protect the safety and wellbeing of workers tasked with the collection and recycling of spent consumer batteries.