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GE Expands Appliance Recycling for Consumers and Retailers – How RAD


• 70 percent of consumers want all or part of their appliance recycled.
• GE and Appliance Recycling Centers of America now provide appliance recycling services to 12 Northeastern and Mid-Atlantic states.
• New technology system reduces landfill waste of refrigerators by 85 percent by weight.
• The Home Depot® partners with Environmental Protection Agency’s Responsible Appliance Disposal Program.

PHILADELPHIA -- (NYSE: GE) – GE is expanding appliance recycling options for consumers and retailers through its relationship with Appliance Recycling Centers of America, Inc. (NASDAQ: ARCI), which has doubled its service offerings to 12 states in the Northeastern and Mid-Atlantic regions of the U.S.

It’s What Consumers Want: Today, 70 percent of consumers want all or part of their appliances recycled, and 82 percent will go out of their way to purchase from a manufacturer that recycles. Sixty-seven percent are even willing to pay more if a retailer offers recycling programs – making an Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Responsible Appliance Disposal (RAD) Program partnership a desirable goal for appliance retailers.1

As the first and only major appliance manufacturer to partner with the EPA RAD Program, GE is helping retailers become partners of the program as well – helping differentiate them among consumers in this tough economy.

“We envision a day when consumers walk into a retail store and are presented with a myriad of new appliance options – including appliances that are clearly marked with information about the manufacturer’s and retailer’s recycling practices and participation with the EPA RAD Program,” said Mark Shirkness, general manager, distribution services, GE Appliances & Lighting. “The RAD Program is the industry’s marquee recycling initiative. Similar to ENERGY STAR®, it’s designed to create consumer awareness.”

GE’s Initiative to Engage RAD Retail Partners: Currently, about 40 percent of appliances collected by retailers are resold – putting inefficient, used models back on the grid.2 In a new initiative to engage appliance retailers in the RAD Program, GE will help ensure a steady stream of appliances to the ARCA Advanced Processing (AAP) regional recycling facility in Philadelphia, Pa.

To encourage retailers in the Northeast and Mid-Atlantic regions of the U.S. to participate in the RAD Program, GE will help facilitate the retailer’s relationship with AAP, ARCA and the EPA; GE will provide RAD Program retail partners with marketing assistance to promote their program participation to consumers; and ARCA will haul away the retailer’s used appliance volume for delivery to AAP3 and support the retailer in reporting environmental metrics annually to the EPA.

More States Serving More Consumers: Since February, GE and ARCA have doubled the number of states where recycling services are offered, providing 100,000 additional appliance units to AAP annually. AAP now receives used appliances from Massachusetts, Connecticut, Pennsylvania, Maryland, Virginia, West Virginia, New Jersey, New York, North Carolina, Delaware, Rhode Island and Vermont.

“EPA applauds GE and ARCA’s commitment to expanding recycling options for consumer appliances,” said Gina McCarthy, assistant administrator for EPA’s Office of Air and Radiation. “Their innovative partnership helps to reduce pollution, eliminate waste and protect the Earth’s ozone layer. EPA encourages other manufacturers to follow their example.”

New Recycling System Reduces Waste and Emissions: Now operational, AAP’s advanced refrigerator recycling technology, the UNTHA Recycling Technology (URT) system:

• Recovers approximately 95 percent of the insulating foam in refrigerators.4
• Reduces typical landfill waste of the refrigerator by 85 percent by weight.5
• Lowers greenhouse gas (GHG) and ozone depleting substance (ODS) emissions recovered from insulating foam compared to what typically happens in the industry today.
• Recovers high-quality plastics, aluminum, copper, steel, and even pelletized foam from refrigerators that can be used to make new products, such as GE locomotives.

A 40-foot tall engineering marvel, the URT system – which is the only URT system in North America and the only refrigerator recycling system of this scale in the U.S. – is capable of recycling 150,000 refrigerator units per year.

Good for the Environment, Good for the Economy: “At AAP, we’ve created a sustainable business model that’s good for both the environment and the economy,” said Jack Cameron, president and CEO, ARCA. “We have a viable business that has the potential to grow well beyond the 12 states we now serve. The AAP facility in Philadelphia is a true investment in our environment, our economy and our community. ARCA’s goal is to ensure the success of this program so it can be replicated throughout the country.”

The installation of the URT System and other capital equipment represents an approximate $10 million AAP investment that has created over 50 additional green jobs in the Philadelphia facility.

GE Appliances & Lighting takes a cradle-to-cradle approach to managing the life cycle of an appliance, from the manufacturing of refrigerators with more environmentally sustainable insulating material, to more responsible end-of-life disposal. GE also offers hundreds of ENERGY STAR®-qualified models to ensure appliances deliver efficiency and cost savings to customers during product life.

See February announcement that GE was the first and only major appliance manufacturer to partner with the EPA on its RAD Program focused on responsible refrigeration recycling, which is consistent with GE’s ecomaginationSM initiative to deploy solutions for today’s energy and environmental challenges.

For high-resolution photography, broadcast quality footage (b-roll), fact sheets, videos and animations describing this cutting-edge process, visit:

About GE Appliances & Lighting

GE Appliances & Lighting spans the globe as an industry leader in major appliances, lighting, systems and services for commercial, industrial and residential use. Technology innovation and the company’s ecomagination℠ initiative enable GE Appliances & Lighting to aggressively bring to market products and solutions that help customers meet pressing environmental challenges. General Electric (NYSE: GE), imagination at work, sells products under the Monogram®, Profile™, Café™, GE®, Hotpoint®, Reveal® and Energy Smart® consumer brands, and Tetra®, Vio™ and Immersion® commercial brands. For more information, consumers may visit

About Appliance Recycling Centers of America

ARCA (www.ARCAInc.com, one of the nation’s largest recyclers of major household appliances for the energy conservation programs of electric utilities, currently provides services for more than 175 utility programs in the U.S. and Canada. Toxic chemicals and environmentally harmful materials such as ozone-depleting refrigerants, PCBs, mercury and oil are carefully recovered in the decommissioning process for destruction or disposal, preventing them from contaminating soil, air and water resources. The company is also the exclusive North American distributor for UNTHA Recycling Technology (URT), a materials recovery system for household refrigeration appliances.

About EPA RAD Program

EPA’s Responsible Appliance Disposal (RAD) Program is a voluntary partnership program that began in October 2006 to help protect the ozone layer and reduce emissions of greenhouse gases. As part of the RAD program, partners recover ozone-depleting chemicals from old refrigerators, freezers, window air conditioners, and dehumidifiers. For more information, please visit

1 Based on results from a 2010 survey conducted by the Stevenson Company on behalf of GE Appliances & Lighting.
2 U.S Environmental Protection Agency. “Appliance Disposal Practices in the United States.”
3 Retailer must be within AAP’s service territory.
4 Based on ARCA Advanced Processing letter dated December 2010 re: PUR recovery rates.
5 ARCA Advanced Processing 2010 Landfill Data, based on the component listing found in the American Plastics Council 1994 Composition, Properties and Economic Study of Recycled Refrigerators Report.


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