Urbanization, rapid technology changes and the increasing demand for consumer electronics coupled with the dropping prices – all have contributed to the unparalleled growth of e-waste in the past two decades. The recent pandemic and the subsequent lockdown have forced people to work from home and adopt a new virtual work culture. The demand for electronic devices has increased and hence the amount of e-waste that is generated. As per the United Nation’s Global e-waste monitor report – it is estimated that the volume of e-waste has increased by 21% globally. Also, E-waste generation in India has increased 43% in 3 years. While the e-waste generation does not show any signs of slowing down, it is crucial that it is managed tactfully before it causes serious harm to the environment.
It is a known fact that e-waste is a complex stream of waste and contains hazardous chemicals as well as valuable metal components. Its management is an intricate process that requires adequate research and intervention of experts. Extraction of valuable metals, degradation of hazardous compounds through biotechnological and physiochemical processes needs to be planned rather than following the natural waste disposal methods – which ultimately make the e-waste end up in landfills. Urban masses in Indian cities need to be aware of responsible e-waste disposal procedures and the presence of e-waste recycling centers in their respective cities. India is a huge market for electronic devices – phone, tablets, televisions, laptops and other appliances are purchased on a regular basis. Whether home users or enterprises and organizations, this market size is increasing mainly due to the increase in the per-capita income and the substantial drop in the prices of the components. Hence e-waste disposal in India needs to be a systematic process too.
While we celebrate World Environment Day, it is also essential that we understand and inculcate within our society safe practices for disposal of e-waste. Some of the most vital questions we need to ask ourselves are:
Is it alright to dispose e-waste in regular dustbins?
e-Waste is not actually ‘waste’ – it is made of a number of useful components. If electronic devices are disposed off in the regular garbage, they simply end up in landfills. These devices also contain many components that can harm the environment. Many of these chemicals also seep into the soil and water and cause harm to human health too. It is essential that e-waste not be dumped in regular dustbins, but via a systematic process of recycling or refurbishing this waste. Authorized e-waste recycling centers enable you to safely dispose e-waste without causing harm to the environment. These centers collect electronic waste including computer peripherals, dated mobiles, printers, printed circuit boards, dry cells, lithium batteries, home appliances and lots more.
Sort e-waste before disposing
It is also important that the e-waste is sorted before it is disposed safely. Not all the materials in e-waste are similar in nature. They have different toxic levels and while some of them are recyclable, many of the components are not. Materials such as batteries, monitors, tube lights and bulbs are hazardous. Giving away e-waste to recycling companies can help dispose off these waste materials easily – and also take care that the useful materials are re-used, recycled or refurbished.
So, how can you dispose of e-waste?
There are several registered e-Waste Recycler companies that work with e-waste. They collect, segregate, recycle, reuse and refurbish all the components of electronic devices. They follow environment friendly procedures to take care of all the toxic components of electronic devices. These organizations use the method of reverse logistics to ensure that the entire e-waste management process is efficient and maximum value can be extracted from the electronic materials received. These organizations also ensure that any data present on the electronic devices such as laptops and mobile phones is completely wiped off before disposal. Security of this data is also a part of the systematic disposal process.
All the devices are collected via specialized collection centers and the electronics that are submitted at these centers are evaluated for their price and the owners are paid value for the items received. Some of them also provide facilities for pickup and drop off for the products. Auditors evaluate the waste Depending upon the nature, intensity of usage, maintenance cost, serviceability, obsolescence in terms of technology, up gradation of technology etc., places values on each usable, unusable components and scrap products.
Effective handling of e-waste is crucial – both from an environmental point of view and a data security point of view. E-waste that is not properly processed could cause more harm after end of life – than when it was in good condition. Recycling and refurbishing products makes the entire process greener.
We are an e-Waste Management Company in India that enables cleaner, greener and better disposal of electronic devices.