E-Waste Day: More than five billion cellphones wasted

E-Waste Day: More than five billion cellphones wasted

According to the Electronic Waste Recycling Association, in European homes WEEE Forum in Brussels and the United Nations Training and Research Institute (UNITAR) According to a survey conducted by the WEEE Forum in collaboration with UNITAR, there are an average of 13 electrical and electronic equipment stored in Geneva, although they are no longer used or are defective. Portugal, the Netherlands, Italy, Romania and Slovenia and Great Britain included 8,775 households. Overall, there are an average of 74 electrical and electronic devices in every household, such as telephones, tablets, laptops, power tools, hair dryers and toasters.

On average, nine of these 74 devices are no longer used and four are defective. As many as 13 of these small electrical appliances per home can be recycled — instead, they often live in drawers, on a shelf, or in the garage, it said. Small consumer electronics and accessories (headphones, remote controls), small home appliances (watches, irons), small IT equipment (external hard drives, routers, keyboards, mice), mobile phones and smartphones, and small appliances for food preparation ( Toaster, grill) ) have been deposited most often).

no incentive to recycle

As a reason to keep, 46 percent of surveyed participants said they might use the device again in the future. Other reasons included intent to sell or give away the device (15 percent), sentimental value (13 percent), and not knowing how to dispose of it (7 percent). The rationale also included that there was sensitive data on the equipment and that there was no incentive for recycling. “People don’t realize that all these unimportant items have huge value and together represent huge amounts on a global scale,” said Pascal Leroy, director general of the WEEE Forum.

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WEEE Forum

“In 2022 alone, small electronic items such as mobile phones, electric toothbrushes, toasters and cameras manufactured worldwide are estimated to weigh a total of 24.5 million tonnes – four times the weight of the Great Pyramid of Giza,” explained WEEE’s Magdalena Charitanowicz . Forum. The International Union is moving forward with the development of a circular economy for electronic waste and is demanding that global politicians implement expanded producer responsibility. In addition to this legal requirement, the manufacturer of the device is also responsible for the return, transportation, disposal or recycling of the device.

recycle valuables

Electronic Waste Day aims to raise public awareness about the recycling of electrical and electronic equipment that contains valuable elements such as gold, copper, silver or palladium. This year’s motto is: “Recycle it all, no matter how small!” Organizers want to focus on the many small electronic devices found in European homes.

“The continued increase in the production, consumption and disposal of electronic devices has a huge impact on the environment and climate,” said Virginijus Sinquevicius, European Commissioner for the Environment and Oceans. The European Commission’s proposals and measures therefore pertain to the entire product life cycle, from design to collection and proper treatment of waste.


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