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ITU Activities on E-Waste

Electronic devices are increasingly becoming embedded into the economic and personal fabric of society. As a result, protecting human health and the environment from the harmful effects associated with inadequate handling and disposal of such products and devices is a challenging prospect. 

ICT devices need to be managed beyond their useful life, both to protect the environment and to maintain the supply of materials. By developing standards, raising awareness and collaborating with the ICT industry, ITU is committed to tackling the growing problems associated with e-waste. 

Introducing the Issue of E-Waste

It is estimated that the world generated 41.8 million metric tons (Mt) of e-waste in 2014, with an intrinsic value estimated at 48 billion Euros. The generated e-waste is forecasted to increase to 50 Mt by 2018.

Through better e-waste management strategies and standards, countries can curb potential health problems, lower greenhouse gas emissions and also provide economic incentives for recovering valuable metals from redundant, excessive or end-of-life electronics devices.

Click here for more resources on e-waste.

ITU Strategies and Policies

ITU is committed to tackling the challenges of e-waste by developing global strategies and policies which aim to reduce the adverse environmental effects of e-waste.

ITU develops reports, toolkits and educational material to raise awareness on e-waste among its member states, sector members and academia on e-waste. It also provides direct assistance in planning and implementation of e-waste management techniques.

ITU Recommendations on E-Waste

ITU promotes innovative ICT solutions in the domain of e-waste, and develops green ICT standards to reduce their negative impact. Within its ITU-T L-series Recommendations, Study Group 5 Environment, climate change and circular economy has produced several Recommendations that help deal with e-waste.

Click here to see the list of ITU-T recommendations on e-waste.

Global Portal for E-Waste

The ITU Global Portal on e-Waste features external resources on e-waste, including municipal waste, directed towards empowering institutional and governmental capabilities.

   Please consult our Global Portal on e-Waste