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India throws spotlight on e-waste issue

India – India has ‘€˜huge potential for organised and efficient management and recycling of e-waste,’€™ according to India Infrastructure Research (IIR). In a comprehensive new report, the company seeks to identify the market drivers and the challenges the sector is facing across the country.

Generation of e-waste has increased fivefold over the last seven years in India and is still growing at 4% year on year, in line with the rapid escalation in demand for electronic and electrical equipment. If this trajectory continues, 2012 will see a total of 800 000 tonnes of e-waste on the Indian market.

Despite pressure brought on by technological obsolescence, and increased awareness of environmental hazards, ‘€˜barely 1%’€™ of existing electronic and electrical material is recycled. IIR says it is time to step up the game. Its report recognises government and NGO initiatives, but concludes that more advanced e-waste legislation is necessary.

However, a number of issues are seen as hampering an improved recycling performance, principally the challenges of e-waste collection and transportation, a ‘€˜lack of interest among consumers’€™ and the disorganised way in which facilities currently handle the material.

By assessing the entire e-waste chain ‘€“ from generation by source to collection and disposal trends, treatment methods and revenues achieved by recycling ‘€“ IIR claims to be ‘€˜throwing a spotlight on the future capacity requirements and prospects of reuse and recycling of e-waste’€™. As well as mapping out the key domestic factors, the report also seeks to position India’€™s generation and disposal activity in a global context.

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