Hazards of E-Waste


Is simply tossing that kitchen blender, cell phone or TV out because it is malfunctioning or no longer of utility the best way to go? In this day and era, the vast majority have a “replace rather than repair” state of mind which is chocking up the planet with E-waste. These electronic contraptions filter lethal substantial metals like lead, mercury, arsenic etc.; and other dangerous chemicals into the ground, , polluting the water table.

As a well-known and casual term, electronic waste (e-waste) freely refers to any white market, shopper and business gadgets, and data innovation equipment that is toward the finish of its helpful life.Over the past years , the overall market for electrical and electronic equipment (EEE) has increased exponentially, while the sustainability of these items has decreased. A greater amount of these stocks is winding up in garbage junkyards and reusing centers, representing another investigation to approach creators.

Electronic waste or e-waste is one of the sprouting problems in developed and developing countries worldwide. It involves a large number of systems with valuable materials, some containing toxic substances, which can have a horrible impact on human well-being and nature.

The current lack of appropriate infrastructural conveniences and procedures for the discarding and recycling of e-waste demands increased attention for its management in India. In general, e-waste is caused through recycling of e-waste and also from the dumping of these wastes by other countries.

The Indian information technology (IT) industry has been one of the major drivers of modification in the economy in the last era and has funded considerably to the digital revolution being experienced by the world. New electronic gadgets and appliances have ventured into every aspect of our daily lives, providing our society with more well-being and security, along with easy information acquisition and exchange. India is listed as one of the nations in the world that produce more quantities of e-waste. Reports by The Tribune reveal that the total e-waste generation from both households and the corporate sector is about 1.7 million tons. Urban India especially needs a critical approach to wrestle this problem. Encouraging technical and policy-level involvements, execution and capacity building, and increasing public awareness can help tackle this problem effectively , and demonstrate to the world that India is ready to deal with upcoming glitches. Moreover, it can set global standards with regards to environmental and occupational health.

Microsoft has created a Vision of 2020 which seeks to produce minimal e-waste in the future by balancing the appeal of physical devices and prioritizing the facilitation of needs in the world around us. . HP has devised a protected cleaning technique for chips using carbon-di-oxide as a substitute for lethal diluters. . Toshiba is working on a modular upgradeable and customizable computer to cut down on the quantity of product that is old-fashioned. According to a report from Economics Research International, as early as 1998, IBM introduced the first computer to use 100% recycled resins in all of its major plastic parts.

Recycling is one of the basic methods to manage e-waste and it has environmental paybacks at every phase of the life cycle of a computer invention, from the raw material from which it is made, to its final disposal. Aside from reducing greenhouse gas emissions, which contribute to global warming, recycling also reduces air and water pollution associated with making new products from raw materials. By utilizing used,unwanted, or obsolescent materials as industrial feed-stock or for new materials or products, we can do our part to make recycling work.

Although the central government is pitching its voice for ‘Swachch Bharat Abhiyan, Make in India campaign, Smart Cities Project, Digital India campaign and The Zero Effect Zero Defect policy, there is no clear strategy for the control of hazardous and toxic wastes. Future labors to curtail illegal dumping will unquestionably include a combination of assertive legislation, new high-tech solutions, and increased public wakefulness through more education on e-waste. Chemical and biological filtering have their own merits and demerits and there could be various technical, economic and environmental reasons for choosing one process over the other. The hybrid policy has the perspective to overcome the problems associated with chemical and biological extraction techniques for the metals existing in e-waste. This strategy can provide new and evolving area of metallurgy, which may assist the extraction of metals present in trace quantity from their metals. As a result, we would know the ways and means of disposing of the waste with the help of the available or latest know-how for a considerable improvement of our environment.

Electronic devices are undoubtedly meant to make our lives happier and simpler, however the vices they bring through improper disposal and recycling become a nightmare. Most users of such devices are uninformed regarding their long term impact on the environment and our health. A sound, aware society that is well versed with the various ways of the careful use and disposal of electronics is what we must strive for.

– Contributed by Tanvi

Picture Credits: Reuters /

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