Friday, June 3, 2011

E-waste pollution becoming a serious issue

E-waste pollution is less talked about form of pollution that refers to different electronic waste, and includes different end of life electronic equipment such as computers, TVs, and in recent times mobile phones.

World generates enormous quantities of e-waste each year with the large share of it ending up in China where it is being dismantled and then recycled. This is the reason why China is today the country with the biggest e-waste pollution issue in the world.

E-waste pollution is not only a big environmental threat but also a major threat for human health. This is due to the presence of many dangerous pollutants in old electronics such as heavy metals and different other organic pollutants. The latest research where Chinese scientists took samples of the air from Taizhou of Zhejiang province has showed the significant increase of pollutants that are being linked with the inflammation and oxidative stress - precursors to cardiovascular disease, DNA damage and even in some cases cancer.

The samples were taken from this province because this is one of the largest e-waste dismantling areas in China with a dismantling factory that involves more than 60,000 workers and dismantles more than two million tons of e-waste to recycle metals each year.

More than 60,000 people who work in this dismantling complex do not have proper protection against E-waste pollution, and this could soon lead to a serious negative impact on their health.

E-waste pollution will become even bigger issue in years to come because as the world population grows so does the amount of e-waste. World will have to come up with the adequate solution to protect environment and human health from the ever-growing amount of E-waste. At this moment the best solution looks to be implementing completely new manufacturing process of electrical equipment that would use environmentally friendly products which are not hazardous for environment and human health.

The current process of dismantling an e-waste in China is crude, basically without any advanced technological solutions. During this process many pollutants such as heavy metals are being released into air, and this polluted air can easily be inhaled by workers and other people that live in this area, creating not only environmental damage but also serious health issues.

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