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E-waste management project yields results

Two years into its implementation, the Electronic Waste Management in Ghana (EMAGIN) project has yielded positive results in line with the objectives of the country’s Hazardous and Electronic Waste Control and Management Act.

This was revealed at a forum organised by the World Press Alliance on Climate in collaboration with the Ghana Journalists Association (GJA), and the European Union (EU) in Accra yesterday.

The Electronic Waste Control and Management Act 2016 (Act 917) was birthed to reduce the disastrous environmental and social impacts of e-waste management practices, with the EMAGIN project, serving as an implementing tool.

The project is targeted at MSMEs in the informal sector, including manufacturers, wholesalers and distributors of consumer electronics, technical institutions and government authorities.

The four years €1,333,220 EU funded project which was being done to see to the effective implementation of the Act, according to implementers, have seen the formalisation of 12 e-waste collection associations, of which six have permits to establish e-waste collection centres.

In addition, 242 Micro, Small and Medium-scale Enterprises (MSMEs) have been supported to acquire Tax Identification Numbers (TIN) to aid their registration at the Registrar General’s Department.

The EMAGIN Project Coordinator, Professor Rosemond Boohene, who said this, also noted that with the formalisation process, “If government wants to enforce some of the activities in the law, then they will be able to identify them.”

Indicating that the enforcement was for the good of the sector players, she added that “It is to provide an enabling environment, resources and facilities for them” to undertake their activities in an environmentally sound manner.

She further said, through the project, 1,496.7 tonnes of e-waste have been collected across the country for reuse and recycling, leading to the reduction of toxic waste into the environment, led to environmentally sound e-waste collection and management practices, and also aided the country’s climate change fight.

She, however, said, there was the need for intensified “awareness, education, training and enforcement of laws,” indicating that, it was a major catalyst in ensuring a safe environment.

Similarly, the Senior Project Manager, Prof. Daniel Agyapong pointed out that, in ensuring the prevalence of an environmentally sound e-waste collection and management, the project coordinators did monitoring and evaluation of the project.

 “We constantly visit the targeted areas to see to their observance of the precautionary measures attached to e-waste collection and dismantling,” adding that, the project had ensured the effective usage of Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) and the required tools by e-waste dealers in their activities.

He also called for the “re-gifting” of unused electronic appliances and the recycling of such appliances to ensure an effective and efficient environmentally sound e-waste collection and management in the country.

BY FRANCIS NTOW AND ABIGAIL ARTHUR

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