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E-Waste: 357, 000 Junk Computers Imported Via Lagos Port Annually



There is an indication that out of 500,000 used computers imported into the country through the Lagos Port about 357, 000 are junk and unserviceable. To this end, the federal government has moved to end the importation of electronic waste (e-waste) by kick-starting the implementation of zero tolerance to waste project in line with the Extended Producer Responsibility (EPR) programmes .

The federal controller of environment, Lagos State, Mrs Oluwatoyin Agbenla, stated this in Lagos at the official launch and inception meeting of the Global Environment Fund (GEF)/ United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) in collaboration with the National Environmental Standards and Regulations Enforcement Agency (NESREA).

She noted that the project implementation was solely targeted at  maintaining environmentally sound disposal of solid, liquid and gaseous waste.

Agbenla, who is also the permanent secretary, Ministry of Environment, Lagos State said the project was timely considering the volume of waste generated and the need to use waste as resources that would grow the economy and generate employment along the waste value chain.

She pointed out that e-waste contained thousands of hazardous substances, which are released into the environment through prevalent crude recycling practices where cables are burnt openly even as Cathode Ray Tubes (CRT) and other parts are broken and processed to extract copper, gold, diamond and among others.

This she said, was the reason that federal government provided a legal framework and established the NESREA, who developed regulations on different sectors of the economy like the National Environmental (Electrical/Electronics Sector) Regulations, 2011.

According to her, “The intervention of GEF will stimulate the development of sustainable circular economy for the end-of-life electronic products in Nigeria, including the treatment and management of e-waste.”

Agbenla advised Nigerians to cooperate with stakeholders and take positive actions that would evolve an enduring legacy to improve the environmental quality in the rural and urban areas.

Also speaking, the director-general/CEO of NESREA, Prof Aliyu Jauro, emphasised that the objectives for starting the programme was to adopt financially self-sustaining circular economy approaches for electronics.

He maintained that UNEP is the implementing agency, while NESREA is the executing agency.

Jauro disclosed that an operational guidelines for the implementation of the scheme had been developed in 2014, which spelt out the roles and  responsibilities of all stakeholders, saying that the global environment benefits would be through direct interventions on e-waste management in Nigeria, with the disposal or removal of POP’s and Mercury.



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