Why Become e-Stewards Certified ?
Join a strong community of processors certified to the standard that
defines excellence in ethical electronics recycling and reuse.
Customer privacy & data security are primary concerns for corporate clients when handling the retirement of their electronic assets. e-Stewards not only requires that all data coming entering a facility is destroyed, but we have required one of the world’s most successful Data Security Standards as a pre-requisite to e-Stewards Certification — NAID AAA Certification. In this way we are assured that all e-Stewards facilities are not only audited by environmental experts, but by data security experts as well.
NAID AAA Certification for physical or digital destruction includes:
- Designated data access employees
- Fenced and secure areas for data storage
- 24/7 video surveillance of secure data storage areas
- Forensic examination of hard drives
- Unannounced site security checks
In addition to the annual audits conducted by accredited certiﬁcation bodies, our Performance Verification program adds three additional layers of accountability to the e-Stewards® Standard.
Our Performance Verification program includes:
- Unannounced inspections by our conformity assurance managers
- GPS tracking using our EarthEye technology
- Critical Non-Conformity policy & investigations
In alignment with international law and environmental principles, our standard was created to stop the export of illegal hazardous e-waste to developing nations and create a safe, green, and just world for all.
The e-Stewards Standard:
- Requires compliance with the Basel Convention
- Requires compliance with ISO 14001 or RIOS Environmental Management Systems
- Is endorsed by major environmental organizations like Greenpeace, NRDC and the Sierra Club
We are committed to ensuring the cost-effectiveness of the e-Stewards Certification. For example, one can integrate e-Stewards audits seamlessly with ISO or RIOS audits for improved efficiency and savings. New processors always receive a 50% discount on the initial annual licensing fee, easing the first-year cost burden.
We do not believe a good standard needs to become longer over time. On the contrary, it needs to become more effective and workable. The latest version of our Standard — Version 4.1 is designed to be rigorous but at the same time clear and simple with ample Guidance to point the way.
We aim to ensure that our standard of best practices evolves nimbly in an ever-changing industry. We communicate with our processors often and utilize their know-how and changing technologies to update our standard through amendments and sanctioned interpretations.
Hear from the Community
The Complete Package
The e-Stewards Standard is designed to be an all-encompassing certification for ethical electronic processing. e-Stewards Certification covers all of the areas of concern and potential liabilities when operating in the electronics processing industry.
- Encourages Reuse and Repair
- Requires a strong Environmental Management System (RIOS or ISO 14001)
- Requires NAID AAA data security certification and destruction of all data
- Ensures safe management of an expanded list of materials of concern throughout the recycling chain
- Adherence to International Law to prevent global waste dumping
We Drive Demand
You work hard to be certiﬁed, so we work hard for you. We actively recruit the top corporations and governments to support and prefer e-Stewards processors and educate industry on the value of ethical processing.
- e-Stewards Enterprise Program
- Education and Promotion at Industry Conferences
- Industry-Focused Newsletter
- Webinar program educating on the value of using e-Stewards processors
We're a Community
When you join e-Stewards, you are joining an elite community of corporate entities, responsible processors, and stakeholder groups. Our members share knowledge, connect at industry conferences, and participate in e-Stewards hosted events.
- Face-to-Face processor meetings
- Virtual and in-person Leadership Council Meetings
- Networking at industry conferences
- e-Stewards helping other e-Stewards is common practice!
Is it time to
Elevate Your Brand?
By achieving e-Stewards certiﬁcation, you elevate yourself above other processors in a highly competitive marketplace. Created by the environmental watchdog group Basel Action Network with insight from certification experts and leaders from the recycling, asset management, and health and safety sectors, the e-Stewards Standard aims to be the most ethical and globally responsible standard for electronics processing.
Stand Out from
Ready to Start the Process?
Please submit the interest form and
a member of our team will be in touch.
We take pride in our
Commitment to Customer Service
Please do not hesitate to reach out to us with questions about our standard, the industry as a whole, or any other electronics processing matter. Our customers are processors, and members of our team started their careers at processors. We truly live and breathe this industry and want to see all responsible processors succeed.
"As Certification Director for e-Stewards, I will be one of the main points of contact as you get certified. I look forward to meeting you and welcoming you into our community. Please feel free to email me with any question you might have."
Frequently Asked Questions
e-Stewards certification is an accredited, third-party audited, certification program for electronics recyclers, refurbishers and asset managers, based on the e-Stewards Standard which defines best practices for ethical and responsible used electronic equipment management. e-Stewards Certified Processors attract customers who care about data security, brand protection, human rights and environmental justice.
The current e-Stewards Standard for Ethical and Responsible Reuse, Recycling, and Disposition of Electronic Equipment and Information Technology Version 4.1 was published on February 22, 2022. It establishes best practices for globally responsible electronics recycling and reuse. It prohibits the export of hazardous electronic waste from developed to developing countries while allowing viable technology to be reused. It includes the ISO 14001 or RIOs standard as an Environmental Management System and requires Certification to i-Sigma’s NAID AAA Data Security Standard. Certified e-Stewards recyclers are audited by accredited certification bodies to assure conformity to the e-Stewards Standard, including downstream accountability for all materials to final disposition.
No. The standard requires recyclers and refurbishers to operate in conformance with the Basel Convention (a United Nations hazardous waste treaty ratified by more than 190 countries.) The e-Stewards Standard does not restrict export of non-toxic steel, aluminum, plastics or used equipment that is tested and fully functional, as long as the trade is compliant with laws of the importing country. It also allows export of hazardous electronics recyclables between developed countries, in accordance with the Basel Convention.
Becoming e-Stewards Certified is a powerful long-term investment in your business, helping you establish and retain a competitive edge. Once certified, you are instantly branded as an industry leader. You will be able to differentiate yourself dramatically from your competition, bid on and win business from customers that demand responsible recyclers, and benefit from marketing support of the e-Stewards network.
The total time needed to achieve Certification varies depending on several factors. For example, if a company is already certified to ISO 14001, or RIOs, the Environmental Management System will already be in place, saving time. Companies need to prepare for the Stage 1 audit, which means having all required documentation available for the audit for at least three months, with six to twelve months preferred. It also may depend on how many employees need training. Some companies hire a consultant trained to the e-Stewards Standard to assist in preparation of audits, which can save time. Once the day comes for a stage two audit the average time among all of our e-Stewards is currently 4.84 days (including RIOs or ISO EMS).
The contracts with the certifying bodies are for three years. After the initial audits are successfully completed, the next two years require surveillance audits. Then, every third year a new contract is signed and another full audit is required. The Annual License Agreement signed with the e-Stewards administrator continues annually as long as all requirements are met and the recycler remains in good standing in the program.
All processing facilities within a country under the same ownership and management of a Certified company must be certified within eighteen months of the first facility obtaining certification. If a company acquires additional locations, the entity shall inform the certifying body and the e-Stewards administrator about the new company, and it must be certified within 18 months of ownership. In this way, all facilities flying the flag of e-Stewards must adhere to the Standard, unlike other Certifications that allow free-riding facilities.