British companies dump e-waste in Ghana, Nigeria
It's not only U.S. companies dumping e-waste in China, this report looks at waste from British companies.
Investigations conducted by The Times of London into the Agbogbloshie dumping site made an emphatic statement that “the dangerous trade in obsolete electronic products is being encouraged in part by Britain”.
In its weekend edition, The Times of London claimed that it had seen computers that had once been used in the offices of the British Ministry of Defence and workers at Agbogbloshie claimed to have seen labels on the back of discarded PCs from several British companies.
“A Ministry of Defence (MoD) spokeswoman said obsolete computers had been sent to its Disposal Services Authority, which passed them on to Sims, one of its IT contractors.
The computer identified in Ghana by its tag number T849 had been “sold to a British company for re-use”.
According to The Times of London, the spokeswoman further stated that the MoD was trying to find out the name of the company, but added, “Where it goes once it’s in their hands is nothing to do with us.”
It is estimated that the total amount of e-waste generated in European Union ranges from 5 to 7 million tonnes per annum or about 14 to 15 kg per capita and is expected to grow at a rate of 3% to 5% per year. Of this total, 15% is generated by the U.K.
E-waste from the UK is continually being dumped in Ghana, despite calls for a halt which has led to the initiation of investigations into the matter by the Environmetal Agency (EA) of the UK.
When ghanabusinessnews.com made inquiries at the EA to find out how far they have gone with investigations, the EA press office simply said the investigations were still ongoing.
The investigations were initiated in October 2008 following media reports which led to public outry that discarded computers from the National Health Service (NHS), and some universities that were collected by recycling firms were found in Ghana, at the Agbogbloshie scrap yard.