Chennai: Even after various cleanliness awareness programmes, India is among the top five nations in e-waste generation other than besides China, the US, Japan and Germany, as per a recent study by Assocham-NEC.
Tamil Nadu stands as second largest contributor of around 13 percent of the total e-waste of the country after Maharashtra that contributes the largest amount of e-waste of around 19.8 percent. Uttar Pradesh contributes 10.1 percent, while West Bengal and Karnataka contributes 9.8 percent and 8.9 percent respectively.
However, Tamil Nadu recycles 52,427 tonnes per annum (TPA) of waste yearly but Maharashtra recycles only about 47,810 tonne per annum, said the report released on Monday ahead of the World Environment Day.
E-waste constitutes electronics including discarded computers, circuit boards, mobile phone and chargers, motherboards, Cathode Ray Tubes (CRT) compact discs, televisions and LCDs, refrigerators, air-conditioners and headphones.
E-waste produced globally is expected to be around 522 lakh tones, which is around 6.8 kg per individual by 2021 from 447 lakh tonne in 2016. The study also said that only 20 percent of the total e-waste produced is collected properly and recycled and rest of it remains undocumented.The study also highlighted the harmful effects of long-time exposure of the chemicals emitted from the e-waste products during its recycling. The toxic emissions can cause health damage to nervous systems, kidneys, liver and brain development. Various respiratory disorders, skin disorders, cardiac issues and cancers have been linked to the chemicals released during unsafe recycling of e-waste, the study said.
Call to educate students on ill effects of plastic
The National Biodiversity Authority of India in association with Tree Foundation and Roots Shoots India initiated an awareness programme - ‘Say No to a Plastic Planet’ for students on the occasion of World Environment Day on Tuesday. The programme would also be launched in 120 schools in Chennai to help spread much needed awareness on the reduction in use of one time plastic.
“Due to its low manufacturing cost, plastic has become so commonplace in our lives that we have become almost blind to it. The problem however is that so much of this plastic is single use, from drinking straws to light plastic bags, our planet is being bombarded with a colossal amount of throwaway plastic,” said by Dr Supraja Dharini, founder, Tree foundation.
She further added that the problem could still be tackled but only if acted in a timely manner. The students of today, being the future generation, have to be educated more about the ill effects of plastic. This awareness programme therefore focuses on how the students can make the school campus free from unnecessary plastic waste.
She also highlighted various environmental impacts of one time plastic, from choking oceans to forests visually destroyed by plastic waste and interacted with the students on different alternative solutions in order to minimize the usage of plastic products and also how each student can calculate their individual plastic usage. This programme is designed to create better understanding to all the students on how they can avoid the use of plastic in their daily life and inside their school campus and make it a zero plastic school campus.