DISPOSAL OF e-WASTES
The term e-wastes include electronic items like phones, laptops, television, parts of a computer, CD players. The amount of e-wastes is on the rise over the past 5years especially. The total volume of e-wastes in the entire world per year is estimated to be about 40 million metric tonnes. However, proper disposal of these wastes have not yet been designed. The reasons include
- Lack of awareness among people about the method of disposal
- No special steps taken towards it since the waste collected per week from homes is very less compared to the municipal wastes
Landfill is the main method for disposing e-wastes in most parts of our country. Recycling and reusing of e-wastes is the second major method which is followed in places where funding is provided. Resource conservation and Recovery Act is the law that is followed by many countries in recycling e-wastes. Waste Electrical and Electronic Equipment and reduction of hazardous substances directives are some of the directives in urging the manufacturers of electronic equipments to provide recycling of those equipments after use. But these laws are carried out in very few countries. Advance Fee Recovery collects extra money from customers who purchase electronic goods for recycling purposes. Trishyiraya Recycling India recycles e-wastes in India but it is also done only on a smaller scale.
The solutions for proper disposal of e-wastes can be derived from the reasons for its improper disposal. Educating people on the safe method of disposals through advertisements ( may be ask some famous actor or cricketer to take the lead), documentary films, shopkeepers when they buy the product could be one of the solution. ( who knows this step may become a huge hit like the polio campaign advertisement by Amitab sir) The second method is to make the producers itself collect the used ones. Since, there are many electronic companies that are set up at various places, large companies like Nokia, IBM, Samsung should take the initiative of setting up a separate recycling unit one for each type of electronic product and ask the smaller shops to collaborate with them in sending the collected products to these recycling units. This also provides employment opportunities to many. Currently, only very few companies have recycling plants. Also, laws must be strictly enforced for ensuring that people do not throw away the products in the municipal waste or else fine should be levied from them. Exchange of products is an attractive and ongoing solution but not all companies do not recycle them. By the above solution of smaller companies tying up with larger ones these exchanged products could be recycled in an efficient manner.
Collection and Controlled breakdown:
Once the general public has been informed and awareness made common to masses, steps need to be taken to make public means of controlled and systematic dismantling, breakdown and disposal of e waste. A central body can be set up to manage general workings of children institutes where e waste disposal guidelines are made public and its services made freely available. This body must also adhere to stipulated laws that have been passed in regard to the e waste disposal procedures.
Working of this body could significantly improve centralized and controlled handling of e waste. This can have a cumulative positive effect on the environment. Everything from the economic boost received by revenues generated directly and indirectly by safe dismantling, to the safety of health of concerned workers can be integrally safe guarded. Workers would otherwise have to deal with non-standard means of separating out molten chips from silicon beds, the fumes of which are known to have severe and lifelong effects on its frequent inhalers.
It is however noteworthy to highlight that only a wide approach to this kind of disposal would amount to significant measurements of success. Success can be quantized by statistical study of waste silicon related e products ending up in landfills and the amount of revenue generated by its relative processes.