Monday, August 30, 2010


The e-waste land
August 26th, 2010
DC Correspondent
Buzz up!
Tags: e-waste generation, electronic devices, faulty hardware, Must-Read

City spews 30K tonnes of e-waste per annum
The IT revolution in Tamil Nadu, particularly in Chennai, has created an additional burden for the civic authorities. The e-waste generation in the city is on a rise due to the enhanced usage of computers and latest electronic devices and there is no proper scientific mechanism to treat e-waste.
A recent study by the city corporation revealed that Chennai generates about 14,000 tonnes of e-waste from faulty computers and hardware. For the fiscal 2008-09, the waste generated through compact disc (CDs) and tapes was estimated to be around 2,800 tonnes, while mobile phones generated a solid waste of 47 tonnes during this period.
It is approximately estimated that Chennai generates about 30,000 tonnes of e-waste annually. “The city corporation will soon identify a private firm to handle the e-waste generated from Chennai. The corporation council will discuss this issue shortly,” corporation commissioner Rajesh Lakhoni said. Only a few private firms handle e-waste and they sell the parts that can be reused. In future, the civic body will also have an e-waste management policy, the commissioner added.
According to Ripon Buildings sources, the treatment of e-waste will be taken up on a scientific basis. The private firm will procure the e-waste from the corporation and after dismantling the electronic structures it can re-sell the products. Besides, some dismantled parts should be segregated and shredded before undergoing special treatment.
The special treatment will also include electromagnetic separation; Eddy current separation and density separation using water has also to be undertaken. The process has to be scientifically dealt with as the ferrous, non-ferrous metals and plastics have to be removed.
The civic body has engaged a private consultant for selection of a private developer for implementing e-waste management. The flourishing Chennai IT industrial belt is one of the electronic hubs of the country producing enormous amounts of e-waste and this waste has to be treated as per the ‘The Hazardous Waste Management Rules, 2003’, the corporation sources added.
With no stringent rules to stop import and dumping of e-waste and municipal garbage in India from abroad, the country seems to be turning into an easy dump yard of rubbish from other countries. This poses a major health hazard to the people.

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