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WEEE Forum launches E-Waste Day to boost best practices

More than 1.5 billion mobile phones were sold last year, on top of 4.2 billion computers, laptops and tablets. In a bid to raise the ‘low’ recycling rate of such electronics, the WEEE Forum is organising the first International E-Waste Day on October 13.

A total of 25 non-profit e-scrap groups from 19 different countries collaborated to kick off the world’s International E-waste Day next Saturday. The initiative was started by the WEEE Forum, a multinational alliance of e-scrap stewardship groups, based in Brussels.

The group expects that 50 million tonnes of e-scrap will be generated globally in 2018. ‘Only 20% of global e-waste is recycled each year. This means that 40 million tonnes of e-waste is either placed in landfill, burned or illegally traded and treated in a sub-standard way,’ the WEEE Forum says. ‘This is despite 66% of the world’s population being covered by e-waste legislation.’

The group adds: ‘Even in the EU, which leads the world in e-waste recycling, only 35% of e-waste is officially reported as collected and recycled and the lack of public awareness is preventing countries from developing circular economies for electronic equipment.’

International E-Waste Day will focus on raising awareness on e-waste issues and e-waste collection and recycling, explains the WEEE Forum. The group currently represents 36 e-scrap producer responsibility groups from around the world.

In North America, the Canadian group Electronic Products Recycling Association (EPRA) will participate with a communications campaign.

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