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60% e-waste recycling likely by 2023

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    26th May, 2022


Recently, the Union Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change made public the draft notification for Electronic waste management rules.

  • The rules, which have been put up for public feedback, are expected to come into effect by August, 2022.


  • Targets: Consumer goods companies and makers of electronics goods have to ensure at least 60% of their electronic waste is collected and recycled by 2023 with targets to increase them to 70% and 80% in 2024 and 2025 respectively.
  • The rules bring into effect a system of trading in certificates, akin to carbon credits, that will allow companies to temporarily bridge shortfalls.
  • The extended producer responsibility (EPR) certificates certify the quantity of e-waste collected and recycled in a particular year by a company and an organisation may sell surplus quantities to another company to help it meet its obligations.
  • Companies will have to register on an online portal and specify their annual production and e-waste collection targets.
  • Monitoring authority: Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB) is the chief entity that coordinates the trade of EPR certificates and monitors if companies are meeting their targets. 
    • A steering committee to be headed by the Chairman of the CPCB will oversee the overall implementation of these regulations.
  • Non-Compliance: Companies that don’t meet their annual targets will have to pay a fine or an “environmental compensation”, but the draft doesn’t specify the quantum of these fines.
  • Provisions to comply at later date: Companies that fall short of the annual target can meet a year’s target, even after three years. 
    • Those that meet their targets with a year’s delay will be refunded 85% of their fine, and 60% and 30% after the second and third year, respectively.
  • Role of State governments:
    • The responsibility of earmarking industrial space for e-waste dismantling and recycling facilities 
    • Establishing measures for protecting the health and safety of workers engaged in the dismantling and recycling facilities for e-waste.

About E waste

  • Electronic waste or e-waste is generated when electronic and electrical equipment become unfit for their originally intended use or had crossed the expiry date.
    • Examples: Computers, servers, mainframes, monitors, compact discs (CDs), printers, scanners, calculators, fax machines, battery cells, cellular phones, TVs, iPods, medical apparatus, washing machines, refrigerators, and air conditioners are examples of e-waste (when unfit for use).
  • E-waste typically consists of metals, plastics, cathode ray tubes (CRTs), printed circuit boards, cables, and so on.
  • The presence of toxic substances such as liquid crystal, lithium, mercury, nickel, polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs), cadmium, chrome, cobalt, copper, and lead, makes it very hazardous.
  • International E-Waste Day has been observed on 14th October since 2018.

E-Waste Management Rules, 2016

  • The Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change notified the E-Waste Management Rules, 2016 in supersession of the E-waste (Management & Handling) Rules, 2011.
  • Over 21 products (Schedule-I) were included under the purview of the rule.
  • It included Compact Fluorescent Lamp (CFL) and other mercury containing lamps, as well as other such equipment.
  • For the first time, the rules brought the producers under Extended Producer Responsibility (EPR), along with targets. 
    • Producers have been made responsible for the collection of E-waste and for its exchange.
  • Various producers can have a separate Producer Responsibility Organisation (PRO) and ensure collection of E-waste, as well as its disposal in an environmentally sound
  • Deposit Refund Scheme has been introduced as an additional economic instrument wherein the producer charges an additional amount as a deposit at the time of sale of the electrical and electronic equipment and returns it to the consumer along with interest when the end-of-life electrical and electronic equipment is returned.
  • The role of State Governments has been also introduced to ensure safety, health and skill development of the workers involved in dismantling and recycling operations.
  • A provision of penalty for violation of rules has also been introduced.
  • Urban Local Bodies (Municipal Committee/Council/Corporation) have been assigned the duty to collect and channelize the orphan products to authorized dismantlers or recyclers.
  • Allocation of proper space to existing and upcoming industrial units for e-waste dismantling and recycling.

Verifying, please be patient.