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Sources of e-waste and its effect on health and environment.

Source and effects on health and environment:

Some harmful metals/elements are present in the electronic waste which is harmful to our health and environment, we have explained in detail below:  

  1. Cadmium occurs in SMD chip resistors, infra-red detectors and semiconductor chips some older cathode ray tubes contain cadmium. Cadmium element is toxic in nature for human body, especially for the kidneys.
  2. Lead uses in glass panel, gaskets in commuter monitors and some older cathode ray tubes contain cadmium.It’s effect on the blood system, peripheral nervous system, kidney and reproductive system in humans. Lead tends to accumulate in the environment and has high acute and chronic effects on plants, animals and microorganisms.
  3. Mercury: 22% mercury used in electrical and electronic equipment worldwide. Mercury also used in thermostats, sensors, relays, switches,  medical equipment, lamps, mobile phones and in batteries. Mercury, used in flat panel displays, will likely increase as their use replaces cathode ray tubes.Mercury may cause brain and kidney damage. If inorganic mercury meets water, reacts with it to form methylated which spreads to all of us through food chain.
  4. Barium: It is used in the computer in front panel of CRT. it is soft silvery white metal. According to some studies, barium causes brain swelling, muscle weakness, damage to the heart, liver etc.
  5. Beryllium: It is generally found in motherboards and finger clips. It also used as copper-beryllium alloy to strengthen connectors. Beryllium cause of skin disease. Exposure to beryllium can cause lung cancer.
  6. Phosphor and additives: this is an inorganic chemical compound and used in interior of CRT face plate. This is toxic in nature and serious hazard posed for those who dismantle CRT by hand.

Similarly, there are many metals and elements that harm our health and the environment that are present in the electronic waste.

composition of materials found in e-waste

Why do we need e-waste management?

Electronic waste management is very essential for human health and environment. E-waste contains thousands of harmful elements, metal or alloys. Exposure of these elements polluted the environment and effects on health and it acidification to the soil, release harmful gases to the environment. Electronic waste management becomes very necessary for us.

E-waste disposal methods:

Recycling of e-waste: The electronic waste materials are recovered by the recycling process. The most crucial thing here is choosing the right kind of recycler that does not break the law and handle e-waste in the eco-friendly manner.  

Reuse of electronic devices: this is most desirable recycling process with slid modification in mobile phones, laptops, computers can be reused and given as second hand product to the other person. Other disposal methods are also exist which can reduce the electronic waste.

Advantages of recycling of electronic waste:

  • Generally when we operate a recycling plant then its create jobs and economic benefits.
  • It can reduce the e-waste on the earth as well as harmful gases and asset recovery.
  • Reuse and resale

In this articles briefly described about the source of e-waste and how its effects on health and environment. And why we need of e-waste management as well as it disposal methods and advantages of recycling.

If you want read about what is e-waste and about the countries who produces more e-waste……

Read more…


K Yashdeep

Hye there..! I am Yashdeep Kamal. I completed my Bachelor in Technology(Materials Science and Metallurgical Engineering). Engineer by passion, writer by choice. I have been writing about Composites, Ceramics, polymers, nanotechnology, advance materials and metallurgy etc. You can read about these topics here. Hope it may help you.

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