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Ecoreco looking for more sustainable recycling technologies
Rapid consumption of electronics is a sign of socio-economic development, but the waste is a double-edged sword: precious and rare earth metals can be reused, but several other substances can harm the environment if not treated or recycled with cost-effective & proven technologies. Ecoreco wants to source responsible recycling technologies.
India is home to a mammoth magnitude of e-waste, arising mainly from the abandoned, obsolete or broken electrical or electronic devices. Thanks to India’s fast-increasing load of e-waste originating from household consumption, enterprises and imports. All these put together, India’s e-waste is expected to grow to 20 million MT(metric tonne) by 2020 from 3.2 million MT in 2015. The recoverable material presently has a value of 4 billion USD (INR 30,000 crore). Major contributors to the recycling of e-waste in the coming few years will consist of smart cities and digitisation plans of the Government of India.
About Eco Recycling Ltd (Ecoreco)
With the establishment of Ecoreco in January 2005, this year also became the birth year of organised recycling of electrical & electronic waste in India. We are very proud to share that Ecoreco, the only public Limited Company in this sector, is also the first company registered and authorised by the Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB) and the Maharashtra Pollution Control Board (MPCB) respectively, to have the responsibility for the recycling of hazardous electrical & electronic waste in India. Ecoreco is a publicly listed company on the Bombay Stock Exchange, and our unparalleled credentials in the industry will certainly be a comfort point for any technology provider and financial investor.
Ecoreco training program
To reduce its footprint, Ecoreco has now launched a three-point program known as T3: Training, Transport and Technology.
We train about 500,000 people who are directly/indirectly associated with collection, transportation & dismantling of electrical & electronic waste in India. This way we can formalise their approach and integrate them with the formal recyclers, Ecoreco Enviro Education (in association with NSDC, National Skill Development Corporation) has chalked out a plan to provide the proper skills to 300,000 such workers over a period of next 8 years, through 125 Training Centers.
In addition to that, we are also working on establishing “Ecoreco Take Back Points” to facilitate/store collected e-waste. Presently, the above informal workers carry out their tiny business from a small roadside shop and generally live at the same place with their family. Once trained and integrated with the formal system, they will be able to set up their own collection centre.
And finally, the most key role is played by various technologies that are environmentally friendly, cost effective and have the potential to maximize the recovery of materials out of the waste. Ecoreco has sourced several plant & machinery from UK, USA, Japan and other countries for pre-processing of electrical & electronic waste and is now looking for result oriented, environment-friendly & cost-effective technology for recovery of precious & rare earth metals from e-waste.
In India, consumption of Electrical and Electronic Equipment is growing rapidly due to the increased buying power and government’s programs of digitization, cashless transactions, Smart Cities, etc., which has a direct relationship with the generation of WEEE. At the same time, in the best interest of the recycling industry of India, the government has also stopped exporting of valuable e-waste to other countries. This is gradually piling inventory of printed circuit boards and other components consisting of precious & rare earth metals.
Therefore, the present challenge is to source innovative technology for recovery of precious & rare earth metals like gold, silver, palladium, platinum, indium, iridium etc. from the above e-waste. Presently in India, the quantum of e-waste generated is of the magnitude of 3.2 million MT, which is expected to increase to 15 million MT per year in the next 5 years. If we go by thumb rule, generation of PCB’s and other valuable component is close to about 8% i.e. close to 250,000 MT right now and will reach to 1.2 million MT per year as soon as we start generating 15 million MT of e-waste a year.
Ecoreco now invites partners with proven technology to help us recycle the growing amount of e-waste in a responsible way. We have developed required infrastructure near Mumbai, India and have pre-processing recycling machinery in place to process 100,000 MT of all kinds of e-waste per year. We are happy to hear about any parties that can help us increase our recycling capacity, in the most responsible way possible.