Two scientific sessions were dedicated to the e-waste topic including presentations enlightening quantitative and qualitative aspects, challenges and potentials. The sound management of e-waste, particularly the reuse of electronic equipment and the recycling of ewaste, is of increasing significance in almost all countries of Latin America and the Caribbean (LAC).
Conference sessions: Situation and Challenges of e-waste Management in LAC
In a keynote speech "E-waste Recycling in Latin America: Overview, challenges and Potential" Heinz Böni gave a qualitative and quantitative glimpse at e-waste, highlighted specific aspects of the region Latin America and outlined the existing framework and infrastructure and adressed the major challenges and the future potential. Bernhard Steubing presented the massflow assessment for e-waste in Chile and Mathias Schluep summarized first experiences from a Material Recovery Facility in South-Africa.
- Plenary Speech: E-Waste Recycling - a relevant contribution to close global material cycles (H. Boeni)
- A Material Recovery Facility in Cape Town, South Africa, as a replicable concept for sustainable e-waste management and recycling in developing countries (M. Schluep)
Workshop "Challenges and Strategies for e-waste Management in Latin America and the Caribbean (LAC)
The e-waste workshop jointly organized by Empa, the regional platform on e-waste from computers in Latin America and the Caribbean RELAC and the global StEP-Initiative aimed at identifying major challenges and strategies associated with the management of e-waste in Latin America under the policy principle of Extended Producer Responsibility. The workshop was facilitating discussion among OEM, recycling companies, PRO, government authorities and academia enabling analysis of existing experiences and identification of suitable approaches to deal with challenges, including exploring the potential of regional solutions and the role of public-private partnerships.
The group discussion was preceded by the following input presentations:
- General overview on the e-waste situation in LAC
Uca Silva, Regional Platform on e-waste RELAC - SUR/IDRC, Santiago/Chile
- E-waste situation and trends in OECD countries
John Dickenson, AER Worldwide, StEP Initiative, Fremont/USA
- Legal framework and the role of governments
Dr. Leila Devia, BCRC South-America, Buenos Aires/Argentina
- EPR and private sector involvement
Ricardo Gonzalez Llera, IBM, New York/USA
- Regional example: México
Dr. Guillermo Román, Instituto Politécnico Nacional México, México D.C.
- Refurbishment and reuse for the civil society
Ángel Eduardo Camacho L., Computadores para Educar, Bogota/Colombia
Following these input presentations discussions were held in two groups, one focusing on the government and civil society perspective and another looking at the issue from the industry perspective.
Government representatives identified the need for sensibilization and awareness creation, the concertation between public actors, the harmonization of legislation and technical norms and capacity building as mayor needs and potentials for a regional cooperation.
The industry group formulated the need to have harmonized and auditable recycling and refurbishment standards. It furthermore pointed out the requirement of intensifying global and regional knowledge exchange.