The global information society is growing at great speed. Faster networks and newer applications and services delivered at increasingly high speeds, have brought new opportunities to many people in several sectors of the industry of today. At the same time, higher levels of disposable income, urbanization in many developing countries are leading to growing amounts of electrical and electronic equipment, and consequently to ‘e-waste’.
“e-waste is a popular, informal name for electronic products nearing the end of their “useful lives.” Computers, Televisions, VCRs, stereos, copiers, mobiles, fax machines, etc. are common electronic products—many of which can be reused, refurbished or recycled”, explains Akash, a grade 12 student from Oakridge International School, Gachibowli.
Causes and effects of e-waste
The impacts on health because of improper e-waste appear in the form of brain, heart, kidney, liver, and birth defects along with also causing ‘skeletal system damage’. Furthermore, they also significantly badly impact the reproductive and nervous systems of humans. In 2016, there was a 44.7 tonnes of e-waste was generated, which is equivalent to 4,500 Eiffel Tower!
E-waste in contrary to plastic, cannot be entirely recycled and poses manifold threats to the environment. The correct disposal of these is of vital importance to being able to achieve a sustainable future. Hence, Akash researched and took aid from a Hyderabad-based company called Z Enviro Industries to decode and understand about how to dispose electronic waste in a better and efficient way. He figured that e-waste for example, laptops, can be broken down into two components:
1. Recyclable Parts: that can be melted down and processed into the recycling machines;
2. Non-Recyclable Parts: which can be reused again.
Akash aims to create awareness among his community and his generation about the pressing global issue of improper and lack of e-waste disposal/utilization through an ‘e-waste campaign’.
The campaign: Efficient disposal of e-waste
“As a part of the campaign at my school, I’ve put up e-waste bins on the premises where I urge students, teachers, and staff to collect their electronic waste (cell phones, cables, keyboards, laptops, etc.—not in use) and deposit in these bins. After the deposition I transfers these goods to Z Enviro Industries for further processing”, explains Akash.
After the successful launch of this campaign in his school, he began pitching this idea to numerous schools and colleges in Hyderabad, along with meeting up with couple of IT companies. He spread awareness about the deprecating effects of e-waste and encouraged students to participate in the campaign for the future of an environment that is sustainable. Within a week of this campaign launch in September 2019, he managed to collect 2.5 tonnes of e-waste from the schools!
Several Oakridgers like Nikhil are taking it upon themselves to better our world each day. From running initiative like Give Way to Ambulance across the country to teaching under-privileged children, to taking up water conservation projects; the kids are doing their bit to make our world a better place.
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