Waste electrical, electronic equipment (WEEE), or e-waste, is being generated at alarming rates and volumes, estimated globally to be around 50 million tonnes by 2018. Rapid innovation, planned obsolescence, shortened product lifespan, growing urban population, and increasing demands for information and communication technologies (ICTs) and other electronic devices are among the drivers of e-waste accumulation. Improper management and inadequate regulation of WEEE disposal have serious adverse consequences for human health and ecosystem integrity. e-Wastes flow along the paths of least resistance from affluent communities to poor communities and from developed countries of the Global North to underdeveloped countries of the Global South, where capacities for properly managing such wastes are limited or lacking. Within the informal sector, e-waste services-including scavenging, transportation, storage, dismantling, recovery of valuable components, sales and disposal of useless parts have emerged as the fastest-growing strategies for the livelihoods of the growing urban populations in many developing countries. While the informal WEEE services including trading, recycling, and reuse, are considered as economic opportunities for jobs and for profit, the improper management of e-waste in developing countries and their unsafe disposal in unregulated regions of developed countries have serious consequences, such as contamination of the environment and people and the resultant acute and chronic health problems. This study focuses on the growing volumes of e-waste being generated annually around the world. The top 10 generators of WEEE and the major destinations for their e-waste in the world are identified. The Basel Convention on the control of transboundary movements of hazardous waste and their disposal is discussed, along with its several loopholes that make the continued flow of e-waste from the Global North to the Global South and between developing nations possible. The most dreadful toxins found in e-waste and their contamination of the environment, the routes of human exposures, and associated adverse health consequences are discussed.
|Titolo:||WEEE generation and the consequences of its improper disposal|
BIRLOAGA, IONELA POENITA [Writing – Review & Editing]
|Data di pubblicazione:||2018|
|Appare nelle tipologie:||2.1 Contributo in volume (Capitolo o Saggio)|