Africa Becoming A Dumping Ground Of Waste Environmental Sciences Essay

Electronic waste ( e-waste ) is defined as obsolete of all electronic equipments. E-waste includes Television sets, proctors, nomadic phones, laptops, personal computing machines, appliances, facsimile machines, pressmans, iceboxs and many others. Basically, e-waste is any electronic device that has reached the terminal of its life ( Tectonic Staff, 2007 ) . Many of these electronic merchandises can be reused, refurbished or recycled. They represent the most quickly turning section of the waste watercourse in the universe. Due to fast promotion and invention in IT, many of these merchandises are going more and more disused because of new engineerings. For illustration, the mean disposal of a computing machine has today a life-time of 2 old ages while in the mid of 1990s the mean life-time of a computing machine was 4 to 6 old ages ( Widmer R. , Krapf H.O. , Kehetriwal D.S. , Schellemann M. and Boni H. , 2005 ) .

E-waste grows exponentially due to the fact that the ingestion of electronic merchandises expands rapidly all over the universe. Hungry for bridging the digital divide between developed states and Africa, but with unequal capableness to do it, Africa has found itself a digital shit of e-waste ( Schmidt C. , 2006 ) . The UNEP estimated that about 20 to 50 million metric dozenss of e-waste is generated worldwide per annum ( Schwarzer S. , De Bono A. , Giuliani G. , Kluser S. , Peduzzi P. , 2005 ) . This growing is equal to 3 to 5 per centum per twelvemonth of the overall planetary e-waste production. If no steps are put in topographic point to supervise and modulate the job, outlooks show that this figure will duplicate in the close hereafter ( Walraven K. , 2007 ) . Economies of graduated table is another factor for this growing harmonizing to ( StEP, 2008 ) . Economies of graduated table contributed to the rise in demand for electronic equipments. This has lowered monetary values for electronic goods and new merchandises replaces old merchandises on an norm of 2 old ages.

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The e-waste trade started in the western states. In the yesteryear, there were no big volumes of e-waste in developed states. The ground was that e-waste was considered as a cost factor in production. The limitation on disposal of e-waste in organisation for economic co-operation and development ( OECD ) states was another factor contributed to the less pollution due to concerns of environmental criterions. The purely environmental ordinances in developed states stimulated the export of e-waste overseas where Africa and Asia became favorite finishs. Developing states found themselves as dumping sites due to deficiency of environmental ordinances, lower labour costs and hapless labour conditions. However, developing states lack the substructure to manage the e-waste, the magnitude of e-waste in Africa and Asia is high, intending that the part from these people has a important fiscal significance to concerns in developed states ( Zoeteman B.C.J. , Krikke H.R. and Venselaar J. , 2009 ) .

In the interim, e-waste has rejuvenated into international trade, exporting e-waste to hapless states is unsafe but cost effectual. Sometimes, due to concern chances available in developing states, illegal cargo is done due to fact that some companies try to get away the duties and revenue enhancements at place because of high rates. Other companies try to transport the merchandises under misbranded paperss and the pretense of charity. The recycling mechanisms in developing states yet is a major job due to rudimentary of methods used in disposing of the electronic merchandises. These activities pose menaces and addition hazards both to human wellness and the environmental in the part ( Schwarzer S. , De Bono A. , Giuliani G. , Kluser S. , Peduzzi P. , 2005 ) .

The environmental jobs are addressed otherwise from state to state and part to part. Some states react faster than others due to the fact that states have different fiscal strategies. But, the menaces and its impacts are someway similar to all. For case, it is obvious and good known that Africa has contributed less to greenhouse gas emanations that lead to planetary heating. The dumping of e-waste on the continent is the grounds of debasement of the environment. So, the move has shifted from political and societal economic jobs to environmental job ( USAID, 2008 ) .

Given the crisp addition in volume and possible value of e-waste, informal sector has been emerged for recycling and aggregation in Africa. This sector is characterized by deficiency of consciousness of the people involved in recycling due to the fact that many are kids and adult females who ne’er been to school. African states in due clip face troubles resulted from the e-waste trade. The impairment of environmental criterions and wellness hazards of many kids and adult females who work in these shit sites are issues of great concern. They engage in this work due to poverty and life necessities to run into the basic human demands. Recyclers lack besides required cognition refering to how to cover with the e-waste efficaciously ( Tingsabadh C. & A ; Jantarasarsophon P. , 2007 ) .

During the waste separation procedure, recyclers risk their wellness as they come straight into contact with chemicals or inhaling dusts and carcinogenic exhausts when managing the e-waste. There besides environmental hazards as some to the toxic substances contaminate with the local environment. Most of the e-waste is recycled informally while in hunt of valuable metals like gold and Cu. The unwanted stuffs are so dumped, exposed to unmanageable fires near the places where people live. The released exhausts ( arsenic, Cr, polychlorinated biphenyls ) contain toxicant gases which are highly unsafe to human wellness ( Jowitt T. , 2009 ) .

However, there are flipside impacts associated to e-waste, e-waste could besides be considered as an electronic resource as valuable metals are recovered. Recovering these metals has ever been a large concern net incomes to developed states. Importing states peculiarly Africa should take steps to minimise the menaces in order to safeguard the people and the environment. Importing states supported with exporting states should outline a mechanism that allows, precautions and protects the people and the environment in turning the menaces into chances like constructing an installing that facilitates recycling and direction of e-waste. Many could bask the benefits of this trade as it is a beginning of income every bit good as employment ( Dr. Peiry K.K, 2007 ) .

1.2 Research objectives & A ; Questions

The major aim of this proposal is to analyse the chances and menaces of e-waste on the African community. Furthermore, this proposal will research the drawn-out manufacturer duty in relation to the context of the dumping of e-waste merchandises ( Saunders M. , Lewis P. , Thornhill A. , 2003 ) . It besides aims to analyze and compare the features of this trade and environmental pollution every bit far as international trade theory. In carry throughing this duties, this research shall reply the undermentioned inquiries:

Does the e-waste trade create chances every bit good as menaces?

Which chances and menaces arise for the African States from being importing the WEEE?

How can we measure the magnitude of chances and menaces of WEEE for African states?

What proposals are needed to pull up a roadmap toward a proper WEEE Management?

Is the drawn-out manufacturer duty ( EPR ) offer solutions to the job?

Is the international trade theory suggest a better manner to merchandise under the free trade understandings?

1.3 Research Methodology

A batch of information and many informations have been gathered specifically on e-waste by different bookmans. This research will carry on a literature reappraisal by reading and analyzing informations from on-line beginnings such as articles, libraries databases, books and diaries and newspapers whether day-to-day, hebdomadal and monthly. For this ground, this paper is committed to desk range design ( Saunders M. , Lewis P. , Thornhill A. , 2003 ) .

The e-waste is a planetary job, there a batch of issues affecting in this trade and political relations is playing its function excessively. To derive the penetrations, this research will discourse the e-waste on planetary graduated table and so contracting the job in national graduated table where Nigeria is treated as a instance survey as an illustration of many other African states. I decided to take Nigeria because there is a batch of information available on the job.

In order to pull up a general decision, a comparing between two states is needed. This proposal decided to take South Africa to be used for comparing intents against Nigeria. South Africa has made advancement toward the recycling and direction of e-waste more than any African states. The major issue is to analyze what South Africa has done in order to extenuate the menaces and research the chances of e-waste.

1.4 Time Planning

To carry through the responsibilities of this research, a proper clip tabular array will be formulated and the content therein should be respected. The timetable of this research will be as shown here below ;

Target date/Mont


Task/duty to be completed

End Sept- mid October

21-09-09 until 15-10-09

Generating research thoughts

End October 2009


Reviewing literatures and reading literatures

Begin Nov -End Nov

1-11-09 until 30-11-09

Writing research proposal

Get down Dec to Mid Dec

1-12-09 until 20-12-09

Writing 1st chapter of the thesis

End Dec to End Jan

22-12-09 until 31-01-10

Examination period

Get down Feb to Mid March

02-02-10 until 15-03-10

Comprehensive literature reappraisals

Mid March to Mid April

16-03-10 until 15-04-10

Analyzing of facts and thesis authorship

Mid April to Mid May

16-04-10 until 15-05-10

Thesis composing + test period+ thesis entry

Mid May to End June

16-06-10 until 30-06-10

Examination period + Defense



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