New Jersey, the newest EU member state?: Adoption of the EU RoHS Directive

Perhaps it came as no huge surprise when California adopted the EU's RoHS Directive in 2003 applicable to video display devices because California is typically on the leading edge of adopting innovative environmental requirements. But now that the past year has seen California expanding the list products subject to RoHS restrictions and New Jersey incorporating the EU RoHS Directive into its laws, it is clear that a novel trend is developing. Interestingly the US states are not adopting RoHS-like requirements, in the same manner as they have been furiously developing WEEE-like programs.

Instead both California and New Jersey have adopted RoHS itself. This trend will pose a considerable challenge to electronics companies as they will have to keep track of the ever-changing landscape of which states have and have not adopted RoHS. This will be further complicated as states apply the restrictions to different products. In California RoHS restrictions are currently being applied to video display devices and will apply lighting equipment in the near future, whereas in New Jersey they will apply to computers, monitors and televisions.

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