E-waste Nairobi 2010 Conference for Kenya.
Environmental experts are now urging for the formulation and adoption of clear policy guidelines to tackle the problem of e waste management, which is increasingly becoming a major environmental concern.
With the increased use of electronic products the progressive manufacture necessitated by demand, old or obsolete equipment and gadgets are continuously being dumped improperly thereby posing particularly apparent health and environmental risks due to toxicity. An upcoming e-waste management conference in Nairobi is set to discuss the issue of e waste at length in an attempt to chat a way forward regarding this issue.
Speaking ahead of the conference, ICWE Africa CEO, Mr. Leonard Mware said â€œThe National Stakeholders Workshop on Waste of Electrical and Electronic Equipment (e-waste) Nairobi 2010 will provide a forum for discussing and charting a common way forward in dealing with this explosive issue in line with Basel Convention Declaration and other International declarations.â€
Mr. Mware, who is the convener of the conference that is being sponsored by Microsoft and UNEP said â€œlackÂ of polices and strategies for dealing with e-waste in Kenya has exposed the country to a greater risk and if this is not checked in good time, more damage to the environment could be occasioned.
National Environmental Management Authority (NEMA) Director of Compliance, Mr. Malwa Langwen said â€œthe government, through the National Management Authority, is working towards developing sound legislation and policy guidelines to help curb the hazard of e waste. We see this Workshop as an important step towards ewaste regulation formulation.â€ Mr. Langwen added â€œa recent baseline study done in 2008 that showed Kenya generates 3,000 tons of electronic waste per year. The study predicts that the quantity is expected to increase as usage increases.â€
Kenya, like most Africa countries, lacks polices and strategies for dealing with e-waste. This, according to the conveners, spells a perilous lack of effective guidelines to deal with trade and disposal of e-waste in many African countries thence exposing the continent to vulnerabilities associated with e waste.
Internationally, China, India and Pakistan are leading as countries that receive much of the worldâ€™s e-waste. Africa as a continent is not spared and though not handling as much e-waste as the three countries mentioned; it is in bad shape since no formal systems exist for recycling of e-waste.
The National Stakeholders Workshop on Waste of Electrical and Electronic Equipment (e-waste) Nairobi 2010 will discuss among other key topics, the need to Identify and map environmental impact of e-waste on Kenya,Â capacity constraints on disposal of e-waste in Kenya and the collection system and recycling infrastructure of e-waste.
Similarly, the issues regarding the promotion of multi-stakeholder partnership by involving manufacturersâ€™ and private sector in tackling e-waste and the formulation of a policy development framework (considering International best practices) will be discussed together with the positive aspect of e-waste such as job creation and the formulation of a common stand and way forward on e-waste management in Kenya.