Pictures of computer dumpsites in
At the just concluded e-learning
Tony Roberts, the Chief Executive Officer and founder of Computer Aid, sees the question of e-waste from a more generalized view.
“People need to be asked and challenged about electronic waste, its not only computers, the mobile phone we use will one day need to be disposed, the hi fi system, the TV at home, will have to be disposed at one point,” says Roberts.
According to Roberts, the world has now consumed more than a billion PCs, a billion mobiles and a billion TVs, which need to be disposed in an environmentally friendly way.
Without underrating the environmental concerns, Roberts says the images from
The major metals use in computer manufacture are gold, silver, platinum, and copper, and their costs are up the roof, making recovery of such metals a booming business in most developing countries.
Instead of breaking the components and recycling as required, Roberts says most companies engaging in such dumping do not care about recycling or environmental concerns posed by such activities.
Though the costs are high, most countries in the European Union especially the
So, for the computers that are donated but do not meet the minimum required standard set by Computer Aid; they are shipped to
“We ensure that all the computers we get are in proper conditions, for anyone to use. We donate P3 and P4s which are professionally evaluated before shipping,” says Roberts.
Gladys Muhunyo, the
Locally, Muhunyo says there is a recycling project at Computer for Schools Kenya, one of the major computer recipients from the charity.
“Computers are improving lives of people and businesses. That’s an advantage and the challenge is designing ways to recycle them at an affordable and environmental friendly way,” says Muhunyo.
However, Muhunyo insisted that the issue of e-waste does not relate to refurbished computers only but also new computers which at one point will need to be disposed in an environmental friendly way.
She calls for concerted efforts between communities, governments and organizations in designing innovative and cost effective ways to recycle the electronic products.