E-Waste management continues to be a major problem facing most African countries including Kenya. In fact, the Communication Authority of Kenya (CAK) estimates that in the next five years, Kenya will be struggling with thousands of tonnes of e-waste, which could be in form of dead cell phones, broken computers and printers among other things.
According to UNEP It is estimated that Kenya generates 20,000 tonnes of Electronic waste annually. While globally, a record amount of 41.8 Million tonnes of E-waste was disposed-off in 2014. Sadly, only a sixth of the 41.8 Million tonnes was recycled.
Kenya currently has no specific laws on on e-waste but the ICT sector policy recognises the problem and places some requirements on CAK and ICT licencees.
Just recently,as a build up to the global conference on e-waste management,The Computer for Schools Kenya (CFSK) in partnership with Microsoft held an e-waste conference at the African Institute for Capacity Development (AICAD) in Jomo Kenyatta University of Agriculture and Technology to discuss some of these issues. The conference provided a platform for African countries to come together to identify and address issues on e-waste management and the recycling industry.
During the conference, the delegates agreed that African countries have weak legal regimes that cannot be relied on to control production, user handling and disposal of electronic waste. They noted that none of the African countries has legislation on e-waste management. In cases where Bills have been developed, they are still pending in Parliament.
It is for this reason that Kids Comp Camp, The WEEE Centre, Computer For Schools Kenya and Oracle Kenya have come together to launch an initiative to create awareness on Electrical Waste and Collect E-Waste from individuals and organization.
Dubbed #CollectEwasteKE the campaign seeks to create awareness about e-waste online and collect e-waste by setting up collection points across the county. Last week alone, the campaign was around Adams Arcade along Ngong Road and managed to collect 1.5 tonnes of E-waste. The collected e-waste will then be recycled to set up well equipped and easily accessible computer labs to support CFSK and Kids Comp Camp mission to promoting digital literacy among marginalized communities.
To participate in the campaign online all you will need to do is post about #CollectEwasteKE and tag @TheWEEECentre @OracleKE. The online participant with the most impactful post also gets to win two Return tickets and Accommodation for two nights in a Beach Hotel in Mombasa.
So if you have any old and unused devices or any electrical waste don’t keep it in your backyard. You can give them out for a worthy cause and if you have a problem getting someone to carry them you can just call 0701 819 559 and the #CollectEwasteKE team will come pick them from you.
You can join hands to clear e-waste from our environment and at the same time convert what you may term as ‘Waste’ to be useful resources to the less privileged. You can also follow the conversations #CollectEwasteKE @kidscompcamp, @TheWEEECentre, @CFSKenya, @OracleKE on Twitter. Also check our Twitter handle @TechTrendsKE for regular updates on the progress the campaign is making.