Perils of e-waste

sdg

By DAVID J. HILL republished from UBNow

Published April 24, 2018

The harmful effects of electronic waste in developing countries is the subject of a photo exhibit at the CFA by engineering professor Nirupam Aich. The show, which ends Thursday, is presented by UB Sustainability.

A repairer fixes the motherboard of a cellphone. Note the lack of safety equipment, such as gloves or a mask.

A repairer fixes the motherboard of a cellphone. Note the lack of safety equipment, such as gloves or a mask.

E-waste collecting is often work for the marginalized and impoverished. Here, a man collects desktop mice.

E-waste collecting is often work for the marginalized and impoverished. Here, a man collects desktop mice.

A man removes electronic transistors and other e-waste from computer motherboards. The shops are often open to the outdoors.

A man removes electronic transistors and other e-waste from computer motherboards. The shops are often open to the outdoors.

A boy working inside an e-waste recycling shop. Child labor is very frequent in this industry, Aich says.

A boy working inside an e-waste recycling shop. Child labor is very frequent in this industry, Aich says.

Passers-by are regularly exposed to the e-waste contamination.

Passers-by are regularly exposed to the e-waste contamination.

Women work in the recycling facilities, but generally not the repair shops.

Women work in the recycling facilities, but generally not the repair shops.

The shredding process emits small and often harmful particulates that can be inhaled by workers.

The shredding process emits small and often harmful particulates that can be inhaled by workers.

In many cases, e-waste workers have exposed cuts which can allow contaminants to directly enter their blood streams.

In many cases, e-waste workers have exposed cuts which can allow contaminants to directly enter their blood streams.

global goals

Sustainable Development Goals:

10.  Reduced inequalities: Reducing inequalities found within the community

12.  Responsible consumption & production: Developing sustainable methods of product invention and consumer spending