E-waste disposal rules come into force

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Rules aimed at reduction in use of hazardous substances in electrical and electronic equipment by putting the onus of e-waste management on manufacturers recently came into effect with the Central Pollution Control Board issuing guidelines in this regard, says a PTI report.

As per the guidelines of Hazardous Waste Management Division of Central Pollution Control Board, an arm of the Union Environment Ministry, there is a need to encourage recycling of all useful and valuable material from e-waste so as to conserve the ever depleting natural resources.

Putting the onus of environmentally safe e-waste disposal on the manufacturers, it said, the producer is responsible for “setting up collection centres or take-back (electronic) systems either individually or collectively”. The decision about the mechanism for collection can be decided by individual producer in accordance with their company policy.

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However, such details shall be specified while obtaining authorisation from State Pollution Control Boards.

The e-waste (Management & Handling) Rules, 2011 was notified in advance in May last year to give various stakeholders adequate time to prepare themselves and also to place the required infrastructure for its effective implementation.

“These rules shall apply to every producer, consumer or bulk consumer, collection centre, dismantler and recycler of e-waste involved in manufacture, sale, purchase and processing of electrical and electronic equipment,” the guidelines said.

However, the rules will not apply to lead acid batteries as covered under the batteries (Management and Handling) Rules, 2001, Micro and small enterprises as defined in the Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises Development Act, 2006 and radio-active wastes as covered under the provisions of the Atomic Energy Act, 1962.

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