LG and Waste Management To e-Cycle LG Gear for Free

If you’re a consumer electronics maker, how do you promote e-cycling, and your gear too? Help launch a e-cycling program — but have only your gear picked up for free.

LG and Waste Management yesterday announced a partnership to encourage consumer e-waste recycling through Waste Management’s Recycle America program; consumers can drop off up to five LG-owned brand electronics, like TVs, audio equipment, VCRs, and set-top boxes, for recycling free of charge. The program only covers LG’s brands, including Zenith and GoldStar products.

Other items can be dropped off at Waste Management collection sites, but customers will have to foot the bill. (Though there are already programs for free recycling of cell phones, GPS gadgets and PDAs,). While the release makes no mention of the terms of the deal, we’re thinking LG is likely subsidizing the costs of the program.

Electronics recycling is gaining steam with manufacturers seeking brand-halo through green programs, as well as the growth of government-led initiatives such as EPEAT (Electronic Products Environmental Assessment Tool), which provides benchmarks for gadget recyclability and environmental impact. LG currently has just 13 monitors certified to the program’s Bronze level. (Sony, which launched a similar recycling program with Waste Management last year, has more than 120 Silver-level products.)

Waste Management currently accepts e-waste for recycling at 150 locations across the country in 42 states. The company says it expects to include recycling sites in all 50 states by September.