Says existing informal recycling
system poses environment and health hazards
A German e-waste management expert
has underlined the need to immediately conduct a Waste
Electronic and Electrical Equipments (WEEE) assessment
Such an assessment is required to prepare an inventory
of e-waste as the present informal recycling system
posed "great environmental and health threat",
said Jurgen Porst, the expert serving as the senior
adviser with the Karnataka State Pollution Control Board.
Addressing Enviro-2005, a conference on environmental
safety and health, organized by the Confederation of
Indian Industry, southern region, here on Tuesday, Dr.
Porst urged the Tamil Nadu Government to establish a
nodal agency in Chennai, on the lines of that set up
in Karnataka, to look into e-waste management in the
Scientific landfill: It is imperative
for Chennai and Kerala devise ways to introduce scientific
e-waste and hazardous waste management systems, including
creation of a scientific landfill using compacted clay
layer, HDPE sheets and geo-textile sheets.
Stating this, he said it was important to train and
upgrade the formal recycling units, as the crude recycling
practices, particularly the open air burning of toxic
metals pose health and environment hazards. The units
were attracted to the field because of the small quantity
of gold and high value metal deposits found in the electronic
A CII press release said Dr. Porst observed at the
meeting that there was no policy either at the State
or national level to address the challenges posed by
Delhi disposed a minimum of 12, 000 tonnes of e-waste
in 2004. Bangalore, which had 1,322 software companies,
38 hardware units and business process outsourcing units
with a workforce of 60, 000, disposed 8, 000 tonnes
of the waste last year.
However,there were only two modern recycling units in
Dr. Porst said the State Government
should consider incorporating extended manufactures
responsibility in their IT policies prescribing norms
that the manufacturers and user industries had to follow
while disposing e-waste.
In India, the average lifetime of a computer is expected
to drop from the present eight years to six years in
a couple of years.