UBC Faculty Research and Publications

Electronic Waste and Existing Processing Routes: A Canadian Perspective Kumar, Amit; Holuszko, Maria


Electrical and electronic products have become an integral part of the current economy and, with the development of newer technologies, the life span of these products are getting shorter. As a consequence, the volume of electronic waste is increasing drastically around the globe. With the implementation of new rules, regulations, and policies by the government, the landfilling of electronic waste has been reduced. The presence of valuable metals in the e-waste stream provides a major economic benefit for recycling industries but, due to the presence of hazardous materials, a proper recycling technique is required prior to the disposal of the e-waste. The total e-waste generated in Canada was 725 kt in 2014. There are several organizations currently working in various provinces to deal with the collection and recycling of e-waste. These organizations collected nearly 20% of the total e-waste generated in 2014. The collection rate for e-waste can be boosted by increasing awareness and by creating more centers to collect all kinds of e-waste. The collected e-waste is processed at local processing facilities mostly dealing with dismantling and hazardous material removal processes and then shipping the remaining material to a central location for subsequent processing.

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