E-Waste in the Caribbean: Is there a potential for a circular economy?
The main objective of this project is to estimate e-waste stock and flow on five Caribbean islands (Aruba, Trinidad and Tobago, Grenada, Jamaica, and Barbados) and develop strategies supporting efficient resource recovery from the end of life electronics. Electronic waste (e-waste) is one of the emerging problems worldwide and its mismanagement results in serious environmental pollution and human contamination. The e-waste problem is more acute on island nations as the dumping in a limited land area causes pollution of ground and surface water, and degradation of coastal and marine resources. This is especially the case for Caribbean islands that do not have the recycling facilities or financial capacity to provide e-waste related services. Unfortunately, research that quantifies electronic waste on islands to help planning properly for the issue is scarce. Also, none of these researches evaluates the probable solutions such as opportunities for recycling. To address this gap, the following questions are asked: 1) How much electrical and electronic equipment are discarded each year on the Caribbean islands? 2) What is the current estimate of market value of rare and precious materials stock within e-waste in this region? 3) What opportunities exist to recover some of these materials for reuse that is economically feasible and environmentally sustainable?
Feb 01, 2019