E-Waste Essay

1074 Words 5 Pages
It is inevitable to deny that we are currently living in a world where technology plays a prominent part of our lives, and that this technology is ever-quickly transforming. Like all marketable consumer products, electronic products are continuously improved, altered, and designed to appeal to targeted consumers. Many of us are familiar with the struggle of having to catch up to current trends of consumer electronic devices. The useful lives of these products are relatively short, and in a year or two, it is almost expected that a new product with more capabilities and enhanced features will be in the market that would replace the old one. This ineffective process may be blamed on the all too Western mindset that better, newer things will …show more content…
The system of handling and sorting various materials is poor; as much as 80% of the industrialized world’s stream of old electronics end up in recycling centers in India, Vietnam, Pakistan, China , and the Phillipines, due to low labor costs and less environmental regulation in these countries (M.H. Wong, 2006) .
It is obvious that the environment in these areas is and will continue to be contaminated by toxins in the waste, affecting local residents, workers, and children. There needs to be stricter standards and more regulation on the disposal of e-waste; according to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (USPA, 2003) , there are currently no Federal mandate to recycle e-waste, though many states have mandatory electronics recovery program. Because we are an industrialized nation making major technological advances and producing items with significant amounts of hazardous materials, we have a responsibility to see that the handling and disposing these are accountable. Our e-waste should not end up in developing countries that are economically challenged, hindering socio-economic growth and perpetuating a destructive environment. According to Sunil Herat in his article “Major Threats From E-Waste: Current Generation and Impacts” (2011) , a study examined soil, air, and human hair from e-waste sites in Bangalore, India, found increased concentrations of elements such as “lead, zinc, silver, cadmium, and copper as

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