What is e-waste?
Not everyone is aware of the potential damage that is caused by the electronic waste that we discharge. This e-waste is not only affecting us but the environment as well.
We live in an era that is flooded by technology. Today, nobody can live without it, be it television, computer, laptop, or smartphones. We are too much dependent on it. Technology has become a part of our lives. When these technologies stop serving our purpose, they become a waste. And because this waste is electronic, we refer to it as e-waste.
In boarding schools in Dehradun, teachers make their students aware of the harmful effects of e-waste. As it is non-biodegradable and causes environmental hazards.
We often improperly dispose of e-waste. The repercussion of improper disposal of electronic waste is very dangerous.
What is the reason behind this?
The electronic items are made of harmful substances such as lead, chromium, mercury, polyvinyl chloride, gallium arsenide, cadmium, beryllium, etc. When these substances are exposed to air, land, soil which further enter into our bodies. This eventually harms us. There should be proper ways to manage electronic waste.
How does e-waste affect our environment?
Supposedly you go to exchange your phone at a mobile shop. Sometimes these shopkeepers, instead of recycling the products, burn them. This helps them extract metals like copper, silver, etc. While these technologies are burnt, they emit harmful gases and substances. These toxic substances include hydrocarbons, brominated dioxins, and other heavy particles. Humans eventually inhale these particles since they remain in the air. These are inhaled by animals too and affect them majorly.
The particles released by burning electronic waste affect not only the land but soil as well. As they penetrate the ground, they affect its fertility and also harm its nutritional value. These plants are eaten by animals, which in turn causes significant diseases.
It doesn’t end there. E-waste pollution also affects the water which we use for various purposes. The quality of underground water is degraded. This water ends up at our homes and is consumed by us. Sometimes animals also directly use this water for drinking, and it causes health hazards.
The reasons, as mentioned earlier, tell us that it is essential to manage e-waste.
It is because it harms us and the environment. If electronic waste continues to destroy us and the environment at an alarming rate, soon things will go out of hand. The entire planet might suffer one day.
To avoid critical situations in the future, it is our responsibility to take care of the management of e-waste. We all can do our bit to prevent e-waste pollution. Instead of throwing old devices, we should transfer them to the poor and needy. These people can make the most of it. If we don’t find anyone who requires such devices, we should make sure that they are sent to companies where recycling of such technologies happens. The idea is to dispose of these devices in the best possible way.
One critical initiative that we can take as individuals is to cause awareness about e-waste management. It is ignorance that causes troubles, and eventually, nature is affected. Making people aware of the effects of electronic waste and why it is significant to manage it might help a great deal.
We can arrange e-waste drives in colleges, schools, and society to educate people about electronic waste disposal.