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Ambassador report

[Ambassador report] [Free Report] What is E-Waste?

by Seojin Lee | 24-09-2021 23:43 Comments 1 recommendations 0



In my previous report, I gave a general overview of the various types of waste in response to the topic of “Zero Waste.” However, thanks to Hannah mentor’s suggestion, I also realized that there is another informal type of waste that I did not specifically cover in my previous report that I can expand on for my free report. That type of waste is e-waste. E-waste, short for “electronic waste,” is the term used for electronic products that are done with its use and are in desire of disposal. Although the parts of a used-up electronic product can be separated into the types of waste I mentioned in my previous report (such as solid rubbish and recyclable waste), it is important to also be able to distinguish these products as a separate type of waste for various reasons. 

Because the specific definition of what counts as electronic waste is not strictly set, e-waste may contain items such as used up phones, TVs, and even microwaves. However, most electronic waste have one thing in common: improper disposal of it is dangerous. There’s a reason why disposing e-waste with regular garbage is illegal in many areas; because these products contain harmful components such as “lead, zinc, nickel, flame retardants, barium, and chromium” (1) and release toxic chemicals into the groundwater and harm the environment when disposed in landfills, they must be carefully separated and be sent to professionals who have the ability to recycle them properly. These people could do this by “[using] mechanical shredding and a high-tech separation device to take out the usable metals” (2). 

Therefore, I would like to give recognition to an organization: The E-Waste Alliance. This organization is led by individuals who understand the dangers of e-waste and desire to minimize the harmful disposal that is exercised in many situations, and have expanded their organization into chapters that exist worldwide. Being a member of the Seoul branch, I truly appreciate the organization’s efforts to “ensure that all the e-waste we collect is properly managed.” In the near future, our branch plans to partner with places of public with high areas of traffic to set up our own bins so that we can collect e-waste and send it to trusted organizations that “have access to the infrastructure required to properly dismantle, recycle, and discard electronic waste.” 


Check out the website! https://www.theewastealliance.org/


Sources: 

  1. https://info.mayeralloys.com/ewaste-blog/5-shocking-environmental-effects-of-e-waste

  2. https://www.1800gotjunk.com/us_en/what-we-take/computer_recycling

  3. https://www.calrecycle.ca.gov/electronics/whatisewaste

  4. https://www.theewastealliance.org/


1 Comments

Joon Mentor

  • Joon Mentor says :
    Hi Seojin,
    this is your mentor Joon.

    As you have mentioned in your report, E-waste is not strictly set by
    definition. This is due to its nature that different types of materials are
    used, and different structural designs are applied in different electronic
    devices. There are companies specialized in dealing with such wastes
    as pollutants can be exposed amid process. Without those companies,
    we would not be able to recycle resources in E-waste and significant
    losses would be made. If you are interested in this topic, refer to 'urban mine'
    and you will find some interesting articles.

    Best,

    Joon
    Posted 26-09-2021 13:06

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