E-waste remains a heaping problem. Just last week the New York Times reported, “Americans replace their cellphones every 22 months, junking some 150 million old phones in 2010 alone.”
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Key staff members from the Basel Action Network returned from the Basel Convention meetings in Geneva, Switzerland yesterday. Attending a full week of meetings, BAN staff worked on finalizing the ‘Technical Guideline’ for the import and export of e-waste. The Technical Guideline is meant to clarify when used electronic equipment is considered e-waste, and when it is not.
Much is at stake this week. There are two potential headlines that will be at the top of environmental news on Tuesday, May 6th. One could read as: Basel Convention Removes e-Wastes from Waste Definitions. But the other might read: Basel Convention Moves to Prevent Global e-Waste Dumping. Which of these do we want? Which of these does the world need?
From the NYT “…Flat-screen technology has made those monitors and televisions obsolete, decimating the demand for the recycled tube glass used in them and creating what industry experts call a “glass tsunami” as stockpiles of the useless material accumulate across the country …”
“Addressing the illegal trade of electronic waste calls for substantial cooperation between exporting and destination countries. Operation Enigma showed the international community that there is substantial will among the member countries to cooperate in order to keep ahead of this modern threat to our environment and global security.”
From Eco-Business: To alleviate suspicions of greenwashing, or the phenomenon of companies deceptively promoting themselves as environmentally-friendly in order to win over consumers, governments must look into ways to accreditate the CSR efforts of businesses.