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Exporting E-scrap:. Do we have a choice?. FACTS. everybody is aware of the volume of e-scrap generated….. approx. 250M computers will be discarded in 2007-2008 worldwide according to the UNEP – the world generates 20 to 50M tons of e-scrap per year

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Exporting e scrap

Exporting E-scrap:

Do we have a choice?


Facts

FACTS

everybody is aware of the volume of e-scrap generated…..

  • approx. 250M computers will be discarded in 2007-2008 worldwide

  • according to the UNEP – the world generates 20 to 50M tons of e-scrap per year

  • according to the U.S. EPA, an estimated 30 to 40 million PCs will be ready for "end-of-life management" in each of the next few years.

  • the volume of unused electronic gear that sits in storage is about 180 million TVs, desktop PCs, and other components as of 2005, according to the EPA


Facts1

FACTS

e-scrap generation…

  • digital HDTV broadcasts are scheduled to be completed by 2009, rendering inoperable TVs that function perfectly today

  • Moore’s Law - computer processing power roughly doubles every two years, thus at any given time, all the machines considered state-of-the-art are simultaneously on the verge of obsolescence

  • EPA estimates that in 2005, between 1.5 and 1.9 million tons of computers, TVs, VCRs, monitors, cell phones, and other equipment were discarded

  • 200 million TVs will be discarded between 2003 and 2010

  • 9% - annual growth rate of worldwide market for e-scrap


Facts2

FACTS

…..e-scrap ends up…….

  • In the US, 70 percent of discarded computers and monitors, and well over 80 percent of TVs, eventually end up in landfills

  • discarded electronics account for approximately 70% of heavy metals and 40% of the lead found in U.S. landfills according to a 2001 EPA report

  • In 2005, less than 20 percent of e-waste entering the solid waste stream was recycled Bob Tonetti, EPA

  • between 2-4 million tons of e-waste from the US end up overseas for low tech recycling each year


Facts3

FACTS

…e-scrap ends up….

  • e-scrap are exported under the guise of reuse in developing countries – ¾ actually non-working

  • exports have shifted to African countries, India, Pakistan and Southeast Asia after China became restrictive

    …and this leads to…

  • in China, air near some e-scrap processing operations that remain open contain the highest amounts of dioxin measured anywhere in the world

  • elevated blood lead levels of children in Guiyu, an electronic waste recycling town in China


Facts4

FACTS

resource consumption in e-scrap

  • 36% of copper produced in the world goes to electrical and electronic equipment (German Metal Industry Association estimate in 2007)

  • Only 12% of total copper production comes from recycled copper (EU – 23%) 2005 data

  • Metals in Printed circuit boards contain 10X the concentration of precious metals from content-rich minerals

  • 28% - metal content of printed circuit boards –copper, lead and tin (Shanghai Jiao Tong University’s School of Environmental Science and Engineering)

  • Average copper content of ore is 0.6% in 1995, down from 3.6% in 1905 (US Bureau of mines)


Facts5

FACTS

  • 90% of the average desktop is made of reclaimable copper, aluminum, iron, steel, and plastics

  • copper comprises 3% of television sets and 12% steel

  • recycling gold from old computer motherboards is far more efficient and less environmentally destructive than ripping it from the earth, often by surface-mining that imperils pristine rain forests -High Tech Trash, Nick Carroll, 2007

  • approximately 20 percent of CRTs are comprised of lead, equivalent to between four and eight pounds per unit


Metal consumption pcs and cellphones

Metal Consumption(PCs and Cellphones)

Metal Consumption

Production PCs and Laptops Cellphones % to Annual

Metal(tons/year)230M Units 1000M Units Production

Ag 20,000 1000mg/unit =230MT 250mg/unit =250MT 2%

Au 2,500 200mg/unit = 46MT 24mg/unit = 24MT 3%

Pd 215 80mg/unit = 18MT 9mg/unit = 9MT 13%

Cu 15,000,000 500g/unit = 115,000MT 9g/unit = 9,000MT 1%


Reality

Reality

…with all these facts we also know….

  • software upgrades, new devices and technological advancements will continue

    - more raw materials will be consumed

    - more e-scrap will be generated

  • e-scrap trade will continue

    • as some countries become restrictive, new markets will open due to economics

    • these new markets will employ primitive processes exposing people and the environment to toxic materials


What goes around comes around

What Goes Around Comes Around

"The U.S. right now is shipping large quantities of leaded materials to China, and China is the world's major manufacturing center," Jeffrey Weidenhamer (a chemist at Ashland University) says. "It's not all that surprising things are coming full circle and now we're getting contaminated products back.“ – after analyzing China-made cheap jewelry bought from a dollar store


Exporting e scrap

  • our dilemmas are…….

  • avoiding pollution (or avoiding the export of pollution)

  • resource conservation


Exporting e scrap

The 2 concerns are intertwined

Resource conservation – through recycling, less minerals mined and oil extracted

But – constrained because of the fear of exporting pollution to developing countries


Challenges

CHALLENGES

  • the recycling of all materials back into nature or the marketplace in a manner that protects human health and the environment. (zero waste)

  • reducing our carbon footprint in the manufacture of products


Exporting e scrap

E-SCRAP MECHANICAL PROCESS

Sort

Pull Components

(Toxic or High Value)

Ferrous

(Magnetic)

Shred & Magnetic

Separation

Resale

Non-magnetic

Aluminum/

Non-ferrous

Precious Metal

Recovery

Sort/Separation

Resale

Plastics

Landfill


Exporting e scrap

DESKTOP DISASSEMBLY TREE

Desktop Computer

12kgs

Product

32 mins.

Power Supply

1.20kgs

CD Rom

0.50kg

Floppy Drive

0.50kg

Hard Drive

0.50kg

Hi-Grade PWB

0.90kg

Wires/Cables

0.90kg

Component

Chips/ICs

Memory Chips

Processor

Steel Scrap

7.0kgs

Plastic

0.50kg

Material

Labor cost to disassemble – US$0.37


Exporting e scrap

HARD DRIVE DISASSEMBLY TREE

Hard Drive

0.50kgs

10 mins.

Component

Hi Grade PWB

0.05kg

Mixed Material

0.13kg

Head Stock Assy

(acctd in mixed matl)

Au/Steel Mix

0.08kg

Magnets

0.08kgs

Aluminum

0.15kg

Scrap

0.01kg

Material

Labor cost to disassemble – US$0.12


Exporting e scrap

FLOPPY DRIVE DISASSEMBLY TREE

Floppy Drive

0.50kgs

5 mins.

Component

Low Grade PWB

0.17kg

Tap

0.02kg

Copper Coil

0.03

Steel

0.16kgs

Aluminum

0.10kg

Plastic

0.01kg

Scrap

0.01kg

Material

Labor cost to disassemble – US$0.06


Exporting e scrap

POWER SUPPLY DISASSEMBLY TREE

Power Supply

1.2kgs

5 mins.

Component

Wires

0.16kg

Low Grade PWB

0.44kg

3 mins.

Copper Ring

0.10kgs

Transformer

0.05kg

Stripped

Low Grade PWB

0.25kg

Steel

0.60kgs

Aluminum

Heatsink

0.04kg

Material

Labor cost to disassemble – US$0.06


Exporting e scrap

CRT DISASSEMBLY TREE

Monitor

12kgs

Product

37 mins.

3 mins.

12 mins.

1 min.

Wires/Cables

0.46kg

Low Grade

PWB

1.30kgs

Deflection Coil

0.58kg

Thick Wire

0.10kg

CRT Screen

Complete

8.50kgs

Transformer

0.05kg

Low Grade

PWB Stripped

1.20kgs

Electron Gun,

Getterpil, CRT Glass

0.03kg

5 mins.

Component

4 mins.

Electron Gun

0.027kg

Getterpil

0.003kg

Plastic Casing

1.90kgs

Aluminum

Heatsink

0.23kg

Mixed Scrap

0.35kg

Wire/Copper

0.41kg

CRT Glass

8.47kgs

Material

Mixed Metals

1.00kg

Labor cost to disassemble – US$0.43


Exporting e scrap

PRINTER DISASSEMBLY TREE

Printer

6.53kgs

Product

38 mins.

Toner Cartridge

0.07kg

Mixed Wiring

0.20kg

Hi Grade PWB

0.66kgs

Steel/Plastic

Mix

3.00kg

Component

Steel

1.30kgs

Plastic

1.30kgs

Material

Labor cost to disassemble – US$0.44


Manual pre processing

MANUAL PRE-PROCESSING

In a study conducted in 2007 by a student of the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology

- strength of the Chinese e-scrap recycling system is the efficient manual preprocessing that results to a high material recovery rate

  • primitive and hazardous processes are employed during actual recovery of complex materials

  • study shows that recycling percentages increase from 70% to 84% when the complete manual-dismantling scenario is compared with shredding

  • partial dismantling of the desktop PC into its main sub assemblies such as drivers, main boards and casing shows the recycling rate of 79%

  • study concludes that high level manual dismantling is economically and environmentally preferable to a mechanical pre-processing under Chinese settings

  • but, best available technology (BAT) should be employed in recovery of materials


Optimal process for e scrap

Collection

Sorting/

Segregation

Mechanical

Processing

Smelting/

Refining

Mechanical Processing

Collection

Sorting/

Segregation

Manual

Pre-

Processing

Mechanical

Processing

Smelting/

Refining

Manual pre-processing

Optimal Process for e-scrap

Recovery

70%

Recovery

79-84%


Economic benefits

Economic Benefits

Material Revenue - Whole PCs

Mechanical Manual

kgs ProcessDisassembly

Desktop PC (shredded)12.0US$4.00

Power Supply 1.3 US$0.65

CD Rom 0.5 0.07

Floppy Disk 0.5 0.07

Hard Drive 0,5 0.40

Hi Grade PCB 0.9 4.50

Wires/Cables 0.9 1.62

Steel Case 7.0 1.89

Plastic 0.5 0.10

TotalUS$4.00 US$9.30


Resource conservation

Resource Conservation

Recovery from 30million PCs

Mechanical Manual

ProcessDisassembly

Plastics 0 15,000 tons

Recovery of metals231,000 tons 260,000 tons

(70%-79%)

Total Incremental Materials Recovered 44,000 tons

Assuming 20% of incremental metal is copper

Copper not needing to be mined 5,800 tons

At today’s value US$ 40.6M

At mine yields of 0.6%, this is equiv to ore 967,000 tons


Resource conservation1

Resource Conservation

Recovery from 30million CRTs

Manual

Disassembly

Recovered Materials

Copper 18,000 tons

Lead 81,000 tons

Silver 168 tons

Gold 12 tons

Palladium 6 tons

Total Materials Recovered 99,186 tons

Approximate Value US$224M


Physical infrastructure

Physical Infrastructure

  • Basic requirements for manual pre-processing

  • space – 1.5X cheaper

  • labor – 14X to15X cheaper

  • tools – readily available


Legal framework

Legal Framework

  • US EPA does not classify e-scrap as hazardous thus exportation not controlled

  • most Asian countries restrict imports

    • some countries require notification

    • some countries allow importation for recovery (Thailand, Philippines, Singapore)

    • importation generally allowed for reuse

  • China disallows imports but misdeclaration is rampant

  • though laws are in place, loopholes still abound due to weak enforcement and corruption


Export vs domestic processing

Export vs Domestic Processing

Export (pros)

  • resource conservation

    • recovery of plastics

    • more metals recovered

    • low value metals may be recovered

  • opportunity for employment

  • cleaner fractions

    • less processing costs

  • economic benefits for exporter and processor

    • flush out stored e-scrap


Export vs domestic processing1

Export vs Domestic Processing

Export (pros)

  • encourages reuse of components

    • diminished demand for new products and their commensurate requirement for virgin raw materials

    • less use of water and electricity for manufacturing new products

    • less packaging per unit

    • availability of technology to wider swaths of society

  • diminished use of landfills

    • minimized leaching of toxic substances


Export vs domestic processing2

Export vs Domestic Processing

Export (cons)

  • improper, primitive processes

    • contamination of the environment

    • exposure of people and communities to toxic and hazardous materials

    • safety issues

  • exploitation of workforce

  • additional costs

    • labor

    • freight/transport

  • difficulty of control/monitor

  • longer leadtimes

  • contaminated products get to the US domestic market

  • legal restrictions/bureaucracy


Export vs domestic processing3

Export vs Domestic Processing

Domestic (pros)

  • quicker turn-around

  • ease of monitoring and control

    • less potential liability

  • lesser environmental risks

  • safer and healthier processes

  • less chances of contaminated products entering the domestic market

  • peace of mind


Export vs domestic processing4

Export vs Domestic Processing

Domestic (cons)

  • values are not maximized

  • higher processing costs at smelters

  • lesser materials are recovered

    • plastics – practically nil

  • will not maximize resource conservation

  • zero-waste can never be achieved

  • with minimal economic benefits, stored e-scrap will be difficult to flush out

  • more e-scrap end up in landfills


Conclusion

CONCLUSION

  • Do we really have a choice? No. We have to do something to be able to recover more metals and plastics from e-scrap.

  • There is no other way but to include in the recovery equation manual pre-processing

  • There are no other places to do this but in developing nations where labor is cheap

  • Metal recovery may be done in Europe, Japan or Korea (developed nations)


Conclusion1

CONCLUSION

HOW????

  • government to government initiatives

  • If manufacturers can set up in Asia and other developing nations, why can’t recyclers?

  • Exporters should be aware of the processes employed by those receiving their e-scrap

  • no compromise between health and safety of workers and maximizing recovery of materials

  • more studies need to be conducted on maximizing recovery and reducing environmental impact of recycling activities

  • call to action

    • accredit/audit qualified overseas recycler?

    • anything as long as pollution is not exported and resources are conserved


Exporting e scrap

www.iri.com.ph

Thank you and have a nice day!!


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