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Computer-related waste remains a local and global problem, despite the progress made over the last few

years. More and more PCs are recycled, but some estimates say that 80 percent of the electronic waste slated for recycling in the U.S. is shipped overseas to be taken apart by low-wage workers, according to the Silicon Valley Toxics Coalition. Some vendors and recycling organizations do a very good job of recovering PCs and monitors for proper disposal, but there's no nationally accepted method for dealing with electronic waste, and the U.S. government chose not to sign the Basel Convention prohibiting the dumping of hazardous waste on developing nations. The PC industry has come to realize that recycling isn't just good for the environment. Manufacturing costs can be reduced by using recycled materials, and refurbished units can pull a little extra revenue out of a PC that was destined for the scrap heap. But plenty of people still don't realize how to properly dispose of their electronics. On the eve of Earth Day 2006, here's what you can do to avoid contributing to the problem. There's a lot of stuff in a circuit board that you really don't want to ingest. Lead, mercury, cadmium and beryllium all have been shown to have harmful effects on humans. (If they enter the body, that is. You needn't worry about their presence in the computer while you're filling out an Excel spreadsheet.) The cases of PCs and monitors are also made of plastics that give off toxic fumes if they're burned.
The Environmental Protection Agency estimates that 1 percent to 4 percent of all solid waste generated in this country comes from consumer electronics. That percentage is likely to grow as more and more people add PCs, cell phones, DVD players and other gadgets to their collections. (news, 2006 )

news. (2006 , April 21). news.cnet. Retrieved from www.news.cnet.com: http://news.cnet.com/21001041_3-6063509.html

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Important points: What is Electronic Waste (eWaste)? Why is it a problem? What are the toxic components?

What is Electronic Waste (eWaste)? Pakistan Environmental Protection Act 1997 focuses on; Protection, conservation, rehabilitation and improvement of environment Prevention and control of pollution Promotion of sustainable development. Its includes: Televisions, Computer Monitors, Central Processing Units (CPU),Cell Phones, PDAs, MP3 Players, Video and DVD Players

What is E waste problem? Every year millions of computer and other electronic components are wasted

COMSATS Institute of Information Technology M. A. Jinnah Building Defence Road, Off Raiwind Road, Lahore

What are the toxic components? Lead - Each cathode ray tube (CRT) monitor and television contains approximately 4-8 lbs of lead. Lead is toxic to the kidneys, nervous and reproductive systems, and inhibits mental development of young children and fetuses. Lead is also found in solder (material that adheres components to circuit boards). Improper dumping of electronics may account for 40% of lead in landfills. Cadmium - Found in semiconductors, chip resistors, infrared detectors, older types of CRTs, and some plastics, cadmium is linked to kidney damage and is harmful to fragile bones. Nickel-cadmium batteries are the most common cadmium-based products. Cadmium has been found in water, air, soil, and food. Brominated Flame Retardants (BFRs) are used in plastics. An average computer is comprised of up to 13 lbs of plastic, mixed with one if not more toxic substance. Polybrominated Diphenyl Ethers (PBDEs), a type of BFR, was originally used in television sets to reduce the combustibility during a fire, allowing more escape time. However, PBDEs have been recognized as an endocrine disrupter, and can cause harm to a developing fetus. In some places plastics are burned, spreading this toxic substance throughout the atmosphere. Mercury - Mercury has no positive effect on the human system. Low-level exposure to mercury in the womb can cause brain damage in children. High doses of mercury can be fatal. Its compounds primarily affect the central nervous system, kidneys, liver and can disturb immune processes. Although the principle pathway of mercury exposure is from fish consumption, it is also passed through medical and dental products and lastly from industrial products such as electronics. Mercury from landfill waste streams can end up in the sewage sludge that is sometimes used as agricultural fertilizer;

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Electronic Waste in Pakistan In Pakistan, the computers and other obsolete electronic goods are imported under the pretext of 'second-hand equipment. A small percentage of the items imported are usable. In practice, after removing the working machines and usable parts, the bulk of the consignment is sent to the recycling industry Hundreds of workers, including teenage children, earn their livelihoods by dismantling the electronic scrap and extracting valuable components E-waste has Environmental repercussions of the various highly toxic elements like lead, cadmium, barium, mercury and chromium which are released during the dismantling of these used computers. There is no proper system to recycle and dispose e-waste in Pakistan, which is a serious issue. The circuit boards originate from all over the world, including the US, Kuwait, Australia, Japan and the UK. Only 2 percent of the computers can be reused; for the remaining computers, all of the metals and plastics are taken out to be resold, according to Silicon Valley Toxics Coalition and Basel Action Network. All of the work is done by hand and no protective equipment is used Sorting is done and only 15 to 40 per cent of these computers can be used and the rest is recycled. The go-downs working condition is terrible and exposed to toxic fumes from burning hardware

Challenges of E-Waste in Pakistan Lack of Awareness regarding E-Wastes Inadequate regulatory measures, inadequate strategies and weak implementation of law Lack of Technical Expertise in this area Lack of coordination among different Stakeholders and Ministries /Departments Lack of system to regulate the import of refurbished computers The E-waste issue so far has received little attention from government and nongovernment environmental bodies Inadequate funding available for the implementation of the various provisions of the Basel Convention. Proper inventories of Hazardous Waste including E-waste are not available. Research work has not been done in this area so far.

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We need a proper legislation Current eWaste regulations create uneven regulatory regime Some states/localities have already enacted legislation Difficult for manufacturers to comply state-to-state Only large-quantity generators are regulated Majority of eWaste created by households & smaller quantity generators not currently regulated

COMSATS Institute of Information Technology M. A. Jinnah Building Defence Road, Off Raiwind Road, Lahore

Bibliography
anonymus. (n.d.). docs.google. Retrieved dec 4, 2012, from https://docs.google.com: https://docs.google.com/viewer?a=v&q=cache:sbw_dMNfccsJ:website.iiita.ac.in/greenict/ppt/george_p aul_greenict.pdf+&hl=en&pid=bl&srcid=ADGEEShtWXW_qdPtejeqdYUDqX6GxW7j7YFLmT_ghwNy9FPUdYCcxYbq2ISMCAaN1SfT-oEikMQCDk8yI00SutnoJreYBRSkgqMbNWbmOnh6Z8YOJRpxbVQX computer disposal recycling. (2012, dec 4). Retrieved from http://www.usa-electronics-disposalrecycling-center-nj.com: http://www.usa-electronics-disposal-recycling-center-nj.com/recycledisposal/computer-disposal-recycling/Dispose_of_PC.html Doc. (n.d.). docs.google. Retrieved dec 4, 2012, from https://docs.google.com: https://docs.google.com/viewer?a=v&q=cache:QPZKDmDy8MMJ:mpaenvironment.ei.columbia.edu/ne ws/projects/summer06/ewastefinalPres.ppt+&hl=en&pid=bl&srcid=ADGEEShX8CqCjRypcQNVQNRg6vq QipgGodMNISr4mQpUsyaldhF8JCZ9q5rxuapmh9yTyjfM4edaIeZ26k_C_HOzOWJykY5BXkEGhpO0w news. (2006 , April 21). news.cnet. Retrieved from www.news.cnet.com: http://news.cnet.com/21001041_3-6063509.html news.cne. (n.d.). Retrieved dec 4, 2012, from http://news.cnet.com: http://news.cnet.com/21001041_3-6063509.html resources/livinggreen/athome/ewaste. (n.d.). Retrieved dec 4, 2012, from http://www.oeconline.org: http://www.oeconline.org/resources/livinggreen/athome/ewaste thome, A. (n.d.). resources/livinggreen/athome/ewaste. Retrieved dec 4, 2012, from http://www.oeconline.org: http://www.oeconline.org/resources/livinggreen/athome/ewaste

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