BHUBANESWAR: With more than 90 per cent of electronic waste generated in the country being handled by unorganised sector in an unscientific manner, the Central Government has chalked out a three-point programme to address the issue of e-waste management. The programme includes creating an inventory of quantum of e-waste, content development and awareness workshops, said Sandip Chatterjee, OSD to the Secretary, Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology here on Wednesday.
Speaking at a workshop on ‘environmental hazards of electronic waste’ here, Chatterjee said e-waste is hazardous as the scrap is burnt or leached with harmful acids to extract precious metals embedded in it. The Union Ministry is planning to organise the informal sector to minimise threats of environmental hazards and mainstream e-waste scrap workers. The programme has been taken up in 10 States in the first phase, he said.
Addressing the workshop, Executive Director, Manufacture Association of Information Technology (MAIT) Anwar Shirpurwala said e-waste management rules lay emphasis on an effective collection mechanism.
Manufacturers of electronic goods have been directed to adopt policies like buy back, extended producer organisation, e-waste exchange and deposit refund scheme to lessen the burden on Government and public (consumers) towards collection of e-waste.
Chief Secretary Aditya Prasad Padhi advised the Forest and Environment Department to start an awareness development programme for school kids in collaboration with the School and Mass Education Department. The initiative would sensitise children right from the school level on efficient disposal of e-waste, he said.
Development Commissioner-cum-Additional Chief Secretary R Balakrishnan said there is a need for behaviour change among e-gadget users. Principal Secretary of Forest and Environment Department Suresh Chandra Mohapatra said the State Government is keen on funding e-waste management projects by facilitating money from Environ Management Fund.
The Bhubaneswar Municipal Corporation (BMC) is planning to engage private agencies for an efficient mechanism to segregate, collect, dismantle and recycle e-waste within the civic limits, Municipal Commissioner Dr Krishan Kumar said.