Wednesday, 21 August 2013

Europe's electronic waste has become Africa's burden - The Hindu

Europe's electronic waste has become Africa's burden - The Hindu

The disposal of computers and other electronic and electrical goods, e-waste, is a growing global problem. In 2011, the world threw away 41.5m tonnes of electrical equipment, and this is expected to rise to 93.5m tonnes by 2016. This is a concern because dumped electronic consumer goods are, essentially, toxic waste.

In the second-hand markets of Lagos, Nigeria, little consideration is given to whether the item is tested or untested due to an abundance of repairers. But equipment shipped here untested is classed as e-waste, and so is in Lagos illegally. It might have been shipped in a container hidden behind working goods, concealed inside a car, or falsely described as a personal item. In many developing countries, e-waste is not treated to the same standard as in developed countries and there is often poor treatment leading to release of hazardous chemicals that can harm both people and the environment...
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