The Scope of the Problem: International Regulation and the Basel Treaty

Friday, February 15, 2013
Room 306 (Hynes Convention Center)
Sanmi Areola , Environmental Health Services, Metro Public Health Department, Nashville, TN
An overview of the scope, global implications of the e-waste problem and international regulations are presented.  E-waste contains hazardous chemicals with potential for long-term ecological and environmental public health implications. In developed countries, where most of the e-waste is generated, release of pollutants into the environment is effectively curtailed through regulations banning disposal into local landfills, exportation to developing countries and recycling. However, most of end-of-life electrical and electronic equipment end up in developing countries which lack the awareness, policies, infrastructures and appropriate technologies to recycle and/or safely dispose of these wastes which results in ecological damage and human health consequences. The dichotomy of economics (which is a critical factor driving the exportation) and adverse health effects are discussed.