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Overview of electronic waste (e-waste) management practices and legislations, and their poor applications in the developing countries

TitleOverview of electronic waste (e-waste) management practices and legislations, and their poor applications in the developing countries
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2008
AuthorsNnorom IC, Osibanjo O
Journal TitleResources, Conservation and Recycling
Volume52
Pages843-858
KeywordsDeveloping countries, e-waste, Extended producer responsibility, Product take-back
AbstractThe developing countries are facing huge challenges in the management of electronic waste (e-waste) which are either internally generated or imported illegally as [`]used' goods in an attempt to bridge the so-called [`]digital divide'. E-waste contains hazardous constituents that may negatively impact the environment and affect human health if not properly managed. In these countries, because of lack of adequate infrastructure to manage wastes safely, these wastes are buried, burnt in the open air or dumped into surface water bodies. Crude [`]backyard' recycling practices, which are not efficient and are highly polluting are also used in material recovery activities. Most developed countries have in place legislation mandating electronic manufacturers and importers to take-back used electronic products at their end-of-life (EoL) based on the principle of extended producer responsibility (EPR). In this paper, we review the concept of EPR, and discuss selected frameworks. The aim has been to find a mid point for the implementation of even an [`]abridged' form of EPR in the developing countries. Implementation of EPR in the developing countries has become necessary in the light of the present high level of trans-boundary movement of e-waste into the developing countries and the lack of basic or state-of-the-art recycling and waste disposal facilities. Change in attitude by governments, appropriate legislation dealing specifically with e-waste, control of electronic waste dumping, implementation of EPR and transfer of technology on sound recycling of e-waste are the key issues in effective management of e-waste in developing countries.
URLhttp://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/B6VDX-4S807W2-2/1/73549912363010a8fbfc57c60579fd82
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