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NJ coalition targets mercury switches.

A coalition that includes New Jersey auto recyclers, scrap processors, steel mills, pipe foundries and environmentalists is promoting legislation to codify the removal of mercury switches in the Garden State. The legislation asks auto makers to pay the tab to remove the switches.

The NJ Partnership for Mercury-Free Vehicles is seeking sponsors for legislation that would require auto manufacturers to fund the removal of mercury switches from end-of-life cars and trucks before the vehicles are crushed and melted down in steel mills and foundries.

The coalition includes Camden Iron and Metal; Environmental Defense; Gerdau AmeriSteel; Griffin Pipe Products Co.; Hugo Neu Schnitzer East; the Institute of Scrap Recycling Industries Inc. (ISRI); Mercer Group International; Metal Management Inc.; New Jersey Automotive Recyclers Association; New Jersey Environmental Federation; New York/New Jersey Baykeeper; and U.S. Pipe and Foundry Co.

The New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) found that mercury switches used for convenience lighting and antilock brake systems are a source of the problem when these switches are hidden within melted scrap. Although New Jersey mills and foundries use emission-controls that meet current limits for mercury, the 75-percent mandated reduction announced last month by Gov. James McGreevey is beyond the technical and financial capabilities of their recycling furnaces, according to industry officials.

Legislation similar to that the group supports was enacted into law in Maine last year and is being considered in several states, including Massachusetts, New York and Rhode Island.
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Title Annotation:Scrap Industry News; New Jersey
Comment:NJ coalition targets mercury switches.(Scrap Industry News)(New Jersey)
Publication:Recycling Today
Article Type:Brief Article
Geographic Code:1U2NJ
Date:Apr 1, 2004
Words:241
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