Effects of E-Waste on Ecosystem and Human Health

E-Waste and its Hazardous Human Health

A lot of attention has been provided to the deeply damaging impacts of e-waste on individual fitness. That’s great! However, nothing much has been said or written about the repercussions of electronics on the ecosystem. Yes, these can have long-term effects. Here’s what you need to know about the harmful long-term effects of electronic waste on human health and ecosystem alike:

Effects on Human

E-waste, also referred to as electronic waste is actually the remains of discarded products. Like computers, mobile phones, mp3 players, laptop, tablets, televisions etc. According to reports, over 2/3 of bulky metals thrown into landfills get from electronic trash. And that’s a huge amount!. In the past few years, a lot of consideration has been addressed to the effect of e-waste on human health. The main emphasis was on the health of ordinary workers implicated in recycling jobs all across India. There is no formal monitoring and regulation done by the government. This also means very little or NO safety precautions provided to the workers. Like as air filtering, masks, or other protective gear. In most cases, these workers carry out their job at their own risk.


E-Waste Recycling

The health hazards faced by individuals involved in dismantling or recycling e-waste is more than devastating. These also tend to make them totally incapable of working as they reach the age of 40. As per a report revealed by the Centre for Occupational and Environmental Health at Maulana Azad Medical College (New Delhi). The dismantlers and recyclers have given a huge level of lead, chromium, and Mercury in their bodies. As this is an immensely unpleasant exposure. As the toxic chemicals are known to produce significant damage to worker’s digestive, respiratory, and urinary systems. These may even degrade their immune system. Many toxins have also been linked to certain types of cancer.

Around 95% of India’s e-waste is converted through the non-formal area. Unfortunately, this sector is happier engaging child labor for undertaking these hazardous and fatal tasks. These innocent children are simply unaware of the long-term outcomes of the duties they do on their fitness. It is much difficult to estimate the exact amount of E-waste currently existing in India. As per a study conducted in the year 2007. It was estimated that e-waste may increase by around 500 percent by the year 2020!. This is an alarming revelation. E-waste poses a direct and instantaneous threat to health and welfare of informal laborers all over India. Additionally, it harbors considerable environmental risks. Sadly, nothing much is done about this.

Effects on Ecosystem

The problem is that unsafe metals and toxic chemicals contained within electronic waste cannot break down organically. With the passage of time, these tend to seep into the environment all around landfills. These pollute local groundwater or also get consumed into the air. The process is compromising to the health of nearby populations as well as animal groups. The Mercury is a poisonous compound obtained in e-waste.

It may be in the design of solid particles, gas, or liquid. This may corrupt the environment in many ways. Bioaccumulation (ingestion of chemical in an organism over time) makes the existence of toxic compounds more dangerous. So as a concentration of the chemical in the food chain increases significantly due to ingestion of other organisms within eco-systems adjacent to landfills.

In a Nutshell

Appropriate treatment of e-waste needs to be taken as soon as possible. Electronic waste recycling companies should be given ample support from the Indian government and larger corporations. This is the valid way to evade effects on human health and long-term effects on the environment.

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