ELECTRONIC WASTE. Electronic waste, " e-waste " or "Waste Electrical and Electronic Equipment" (" WEEE ") is a waste consisting of any broken or unwanted electrical or electronic appliance.
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Electronic waste, "e-waste" or "Waste Electrical and Electronic Equipment" ("WEEE") is a waste consisting of any broken or unwanted electrical or electronic appliance.
It is a point of concern considering that many components of such equipment are considered toxic and are not biodegradable.
500,000 tons e-waste p.a.
Expected to touch a million ton by 2011
Broad break up appears as under:
Mumbai : 50,000 tons
Delhi : 35,000
Bangalore : 30,000
Chennai : 25,000
Kolkata : 19,000
Ahmedabad : 14,000
Hyderabad : 13,000
Pune : 10,000
Indore : 8,000
expected to increase to
500 million by
40 million computers
which are expected to grow
to 80 million computers
by end 2010
ready for disposal in India
A relatively new category of waste brought along with the high-tech boom
E-waste includes all types of electronic equipments/ products which have become obsolete or have been discarded due to:
Advancement in technology
Changes in fashion, style, status or perception
Nearing the end of their useful life
Generally understood to refer to any old, obsolete, end-of-life appliances using electricity which have been disposed off by their owners
A relatively new industry in India, traditionally dominated by the unorganized segment
Scrap dealers and rag-pickers gather e-waste from households in their area of operation and employ crude and highly unsafe processes for recycling the same, causing significant environmental damage
open burning of wires to extract resalable copper, soaking of circuit boards in acid baths to extract precious metal, disposing the residue into open drains or land, etc.
The formal e-waste recycling segment consists of a few large players which have the proper infrastructure to handle WEEE equipment
The unorganised segment often employs crude and highly unsafe processes for while recycling e-waste, and extracting precious materials therefrom
As per a study released by MAIT, India generated 330,000 MT of electronic waste in 2007, while an additional 50,000 MT was illegally imported
MAIT estimates that by 2011, e-waste in India would touch 470,000 MT
The Western region contributes maximum to e-waste generation – up to 35%
Sixty five cities in India generate up to 60% of total e-waste
Ten states alone generate more than 70% of total e-waste
MAIT estimates that only 19,000 tonnes of the total e-waste generated gets ultimately processed by the formal recycling sector
As per the study, around 94% of corporates in India do not have a policy on disposal of obsolete IT products/ e-waste
Due to the pervading reach of information technology in trade and commerce, computer waste is the most significant of all e-waste, along with televisions and cellular phones
E-waste contains both valuable as well as harmful components
Valuable components include precious metals such as gold, silver, copper, palladium, etc.
Harmful substances include lead, mercury, cadmium, etc.
Some of the key toxic elements contained within components of a computer include: