The following inquiry about disposal reached us:
„Can you please provide me information about what actually happens to our electronic waste? A recent TV documentation has reported on how electronic waste is being shipped from France, the UK, the US and also Germany to Ghana. Since we pay the recycling of the electronic waste, I would like to know what happens with it.”
Here is the answer of our disposal partner NOEX:
The export of electronic waste is subject to very strict guidelines of the EU Waste Shipment Regulation. Electronic waste is categorically considered as dangerous waste. Even the export to European neighboring countries is handled extremely restrictive. The export to non-European countries is only possible in very few cases.
The TV documentary hence refers to the illegal export of electronic waste done by hawkers. They collect electronic waste illegally, either from the street or, more often, from companies whose internal policies are not so strict when it comes to environmental issues. The waste then is shipped i.e. to Ghana under the wrong specification of “fully functional used devices”. Together with municipalities and public authorities we fight against those illegal business practices.
Our company is not involved in the described business practices. Also, we do not participate in the system of child labor. As an example: In Ghana children are forced to burn cable sheathings in order to get access to the metals inside. This procedure releases highly toxic substances which will be inhaled by the child laborers.
Our company and our partner use up-to-date dismantling machines to recycle all electronic devices and strictly adhere the existing environmental and health directives. Our facilities fulfill all legal requirements. Furthermore, our facilities are recognized as primary treatment facilities pursuant to ElektroG as well as specialist disposal companies. Also, we are certified due to DIN/EN/ISO 9001 (quality management) and DIN/EN/ISO 14001 (environmental management) to fulfill our responsibility towards the people and the environment. You can find our certificates here.
As a matter of course we will answer all your further questions about this.