A recent study by Singapore’s National Environment Agency (NEA) found that each citizen disposes of the equivalent of 73 mobile phones in electronic waste (e-waste) a year, with only about 6 per cent being deposited in recycling bins.
A major health hazard due to heavy metals that can leach into the groundwater, the Singapore government is taking concrete steps to protect the soil and groundwater beneath the feet of its citizens.
From 2021 the city-state will introduce a comprehensive e-waste recycling programme aimed at minimising the cause associated with e-waste. The programme was announced in March by Dr Amy Khor, senior Minister of State for the Environment and Water Resources.
Singapore’s e-waste recycling programme will adopt an Extended Producer Responsibility (EPR) model whereby manufacturers and importers have to take responsibility in treating and disposing of post-consumer products at their own expense.
The NEA will impose collection targets for manufacturers and importers to take back certain numbers of product available in the market. Producer Responsibility Organisations (PROs) will be set up to oversee the collection as well as facilitate producers in meeting their target.
Singapore’s e-waste recycling programme will start collecting waste from five categories of products: mobile phones and computers, batteries, lamps, solar panels, and household appliance, collectively the greatest source of e-waste in Singapore highlighting that the rapid growth of Singapore’s manufacturing sector has not been without affect.
This looks set to continue. Electronics manufacturing alone is expected to create some 2,100 new jobs for professionals, managers, executives and technicians (PMETs) between now and 2020. Last year Minister for Communications and Information, Yaacob Ibrahim, projected that Singapore will need more than 42,000 ICT (information and communication technology) professionals by 2020.
Feature photo PXhere
- Mandatory e-waste management system to be implemented in Singapore by 2021 (Open Gov Asia)
- Compulsory e-waste management system to be enforced by 2021 (Channel NewsAsia)
- E-waste management system to be up by 2021 (Today Online)
She previously covered police rounds for Philippine Daily Inquirer as a trainee before becoming editorial staff at Gospel Komiks under the Communication Foundation for Asia (CFA-MG), Santa Mesa, Manila where she wrote lifestyle and trending fashion and styles articles.