On World Earth Day, KSPCB looks at tapping wealth from waste

On World Earth Day, KSPCB looks at tapping wealth from waste

Wildlife photo expo, special lectures held to mark the day in city

As part of ‘World Earth Day’, several events like wildlife photo expo and special lectures were organised by various organisations and institutions in the city on Saturday.

Maharaja’s College organised a ‘wildlife photo expo’ on its premises. Photographers B S Krupakar and Senani Hegde inaugurated the event. Paintings of U G Mohankumar Aradhya were on display at Mysuru Art Gallery.

The Confederation of Indian Industry (CII), Mysuru, organised a special session on ‘E-Waste Management’ and a collection drive as part of Earth Day. Assistant Environmental Officer of Karnataka State Pollution Control Board (KSPCB) Sabike Noobia attended a session and briefed participants about the rules and regulations of KSPCB to be enforced in industries.

The officer said that most of the industries are following the norms but it is not the same with the education and government sector as they are not able to find the right place to recycle e-waste.

“Karnataka ranks sixth in generating e-waste in the country. India and China have become global recycling hubs for e-waste generated the world over. E-waste is also hazardous as it contains many toxic and hazardous materials and heavy metals like lead, cadmium and mercury polychlorinated biphenyl and brominated flame retardants that have the potential to cause environmental pollution and pose health hazards when processed, recycled or disposed of.

“E-waste is hazardous. It is, however, valuable too because of the presence of precious metals like copper, gold and platinum in them. The extraction of these metals by crude rudimentary processes leads to environmental pollution and occupational health and safety hazards. According to a study, 95% of e-waste recycling is undertaken by the informal sector in India. There are 138 e-waste dismantling units in the country,” she said.

E-Parisara, Bengaluru, general manager R Ravindra said that India is the fifth largest producer of e-waste in the world. He said, “Many are not aware of handling e-waste which consists of electrical and electronic equipment waste. E-waste is not waste. In fact, it is wealth. Even waste batteries have wealth in them in the form of lithium. In foreign and developed countries the method of e-waste is placed by the roadside while in India we keep it in cupboards in the process of going into the unorganised sector, creating damage to environment,” he said.

Annually, India produces 2.7 million tonne of e-waste and stands fifth in terms of production of e-waste in the world. People suffer from various health complications as safety precautions are not taken up when e-waste is disposed in an unscientific manner. Even children suffer from health issues from a very young age if they are exposed to hazardous conditions.

CII Mysuru chapter vice president V K Shanmugam and Mahesh Jambardi of Excelsoft Technologies were also present.