Success for the Second International E-Waste Day


The WEEE Forum organized the second International E-Waste Day, on 14th October. For the occasion, one hundred organisations from over forty countries worldwide participated with activities as part of the taking place on. The event gathered e-waste stakeholders across the world to promote the correct disposal of electrical and electronic equipment to enable reuse and recycling. The International Telecommunication Union, the UN agency responsible for ICT, has, for the first time, became a partner in the day and its global reach will be important in spreading the message as widely as possible.
«We are entering the next stage in Europe’s commitment to foster a circular economy. – Karmenu Vella, EU Commissioner for Environment, Maritime Affairs and Fisheries explained in his dedicated video message – This will be part of the new Green Deal for Europe announced by the incoming Commission President Ursula van der Leyen. Prevention and dealing with e-waste will be part and parcel of our coming work. This means recycling all our electronic waste where it cannot be avoided. But it also means rethinking the value chain for electronic goods. It means considering their appropriateness for reuse or recycling from conception. It means even going beyond and prioritizing de-materialisation and closed loop systems.» 
According to WEEE Forum, it is estimated that 50 million tonnes of e-waste will be generated across the planet in 2019. Half of this is personal devices such as computers, screens, smartphones, tablets and TVs, with the remainder being larger household appliances and heating and cooling equipment. Only around 20% of global e-waste is recycled each year, which means that 40 million tonnes of e-waste per annum is either placed in landfill, burned or illegally traded and treated in a sub-standard way and this is despite 66% of the world’s population being covered by e-waste legislation. This results in the huge loss of valuable and critical raw materials from the supply chain and causes serious health, environmental and societal issues through illegal shipments of waste to developing countries.