E-waste- environment and public health hazard

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E-waste—an environment and public health hazard
All types of waste are not only imported but generated in India hazardous industrial waste, municipal solid waste and e-waste. The
quantum of wastes generated over the past several years have posed an ever increasing threat to environment and public health. Over eighty-eight critically polluted industrial zones have been identified by the CPCB. Pollutants from such zones contaminate water bodies and rivers and even pollute the ground water in many places. Studies have also shown that crops are contaminated

through industrial effluents but the scale of such an impact has yet to be identified.
As far as e-waste is concerned, it has emerged as one of the fastest growing waste streams world wide today. The sheer amount of electronic equipments reaching end-of-life poses a huge challenge. Computers and electronics equipments are designed without giving sufficient attention to the aspects such as downstream impacts, and the ease of recycling. Thus, their dismantling is also extremely labour-intensive. As long as electronic products continue to contain an assortment of toxic chemicals and are designed without recycling aspects, they would pose a threat to environment and public health at their end-of-life. As electronic products are currently constituted, e-waste recycling operations in any country will generate polluting residues and emissions. Toxics Link has reported that India has over 1.38 million obsolete computers with manufacturers adding about 1,050 tonnes of electronic scrap every year. It is currently estimated that India produces some 3.8 lakh tonnes of

e-waste annually. E-waste now forms over 70 per cent of
landfills. When developing countries like India start tightening and enforcing stricter legislation on transboundary
movements of e-waste, developed countries may find it
harder to avoid the issue of recycling and disposal through
export. However, in March, 2010, in the journal titled...
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