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India emerges as 5th largest producer of e-waste in world: ASSOCHAM-KPMG study

May 26, 2016 16:43 IST

India emerged as the fifth largest producer of e-waste in the world, but the second largest mobile market with 1.03 billion subscribers as per the ASSOCHAM-KPMG joint study that was published on 25 May 2016.

Highlights of the study
• India discards roughly 18.5 lakh metric tonnes of electronic waste each year with telecom equipment alone accounting for 12 percent of the e-waste.
• Over 100 million handsets have been manufactured last year.
• The unorganised sector in India is estimated to handle around 95 percent of the e-waste produced in the country.
• In the last 15 months alone, operators have invested over 30 percent of the cumulative investment made in 20 years prior.

Recommendations of the Study
• With more than 100 crore mobile phones in circulation, nearly 25 percent of mobiles end up in e-waste annually.
• It is suggested that e-waste collection targets are implemented in a phased manner with lower and practically achievable target limits.
• The detailed implementation of procedures for collection of e-waste from the market needs to be followed.
• The phased manner for implementation of e-waste collection targets needs to be introduced.
• The steps should be taken to rationalize the various audits being conducted by various authorities, to ensure that same areas are not audited on a repeated basis.
• The guidelines should be issued by Department of Telecom (DoT) with respect to locations of tower and clearance requirements should be adopted across states to smoothen tower set up process.

United Nations' Global E-Waste Monitor 2014 report

As per the Global E-Waste Monitor 2014 report by United Nations, India was the fifth biggest producer of e-waste in the world at that time as well. The report was compiled by UN think tank United Nations University (UNU).

In 2014, India discarded 1.7 million tonnes (Mt) of electronic and electrical equipment.

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