Greenpeace has just published a report on one of the destinations of European electronic waste (e-waste). Entitled Poisoning the poor. Electronic waste in Ghana. this report examines how the trade in e-waste is spreading from Asia to West Africa.
Greenpeace has identified severe contamination with hazardous chemicals in two e-waste scrap yards in Ghana.
This is resulting from illegal exportation of e-waste from European countries and the US. It is also the result of an inadequate take-back scheme from the producers of electronic products.
As a member state of the European Union Malta should have implemented the WEEE Directive ages ago (WEEE means Waste from Electric and Electronic Equipment). A legal notice was published some time ago. Government collects an eco-contribution too o all electronic equipment sold. Yet the provisions of the Directive are not being implemented.
These include the putting into practice of “producer responsibility principles”. The retail outlet selling the equipment in conjunction with the importer is bound to take back old equipment in order that it be recycled.
It is pertinet to ask : what is being done with Maltese e-waste ?