e-waste bill: Environmentalists seek support . Dumping of end-of-life gadgets to be banned. Emmi de Jesus, Rep of Gabriela Women’s Party introduced the bill.

e-waste management is a must .

PICS Courtesy: gabrielawomensparty.com &  Inquirer.net

PICS Courtesy: gabrielawomensparty.com &

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With the increase in population and the enlarged concrete jungles, the problem of clearing the waste matter has increased manifolds. Furthermore, the electronic age added vast amounts of e-waste. .

With improved levels of hygiene, specialized techniques emerged for management of different types of wastes. Gradually, the governments have come up with legislation to enforce waste management and protection of the environment.

Armed with the power of these legislations, the environmental activists and organizations gained vital legal support. Hence, the government and the courts also give due consideration to their opinion on environmental matters.
Consequently, when the rules concerning management of e-waste came up, an environmental group voiced its support.

The support came from Kalikasan People’s Network for the Environment (Kalikasan PNE). They exhorted the President and the other lawmakers to support House Bill No. (HB) 5901. This bill aims to effectively reduce the e-waste in the nation.

Emmi de Jesus, Representative of Gabriela Women’s Party introduced the bill in the House.

Clemente Bautista National Coordinator of Kalikasan PNE stated that the government was duty-bound to provide a clean environment. Moreover, a step in the right direction needs the maximum support, he stated.

The proposed legislation aims to make waste management a public service. It directs private enterprises to take responsibility for their acts of littering. Private manufacturing units will be responsible for all waste that they produce at any stage of the manufacturing process.

In effect, they must fulfill their legal responsibility even when the product reaches the end of its life. This law is known as Extended Producer’s Responsibility or EPR

The environmental impact of the EPR concept aims to decrease the environmental impact of e-waste. It simultaneously maximizes the usage of its components till it is of no use, Kalikasan said.

The harmful toxins and harmful substances may result in:
• Birth defects,
• Mental disabilities,
• Cancer, and
• Damage to vital organs.

This was the result of extensive research undertaken by the World Health Organization, Bautista clarified. Till now, workers of poor communities, junk yards cleared e-waste. The absence of organized clearing systems exposed the workers to severe health hazards.

Hazardous e-waste produced all around the world ended up in our dumping grounds causing toxic hazards.

The dumping of toxic chemicals contaminates the environment gradually. The inward movement of hazardous material is often disguised as recycled material from abroad. Thus, tons of imported e-wastes move into our country and ends up polluting our country’s environment, Bautista claimed.

Therefore, environmentalists are pushing for HB 5901.

Once introduced, we will impose a total ban on end-of-life electronic gadgets, Bautista said. That is why; we need all the support that we can get.

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Umrao Singh
Written for: Lars-Magnus Carlsson.
Friday, June 23, 2017