Source: This post is based on the article “New online platform to promote reuse, repair, recycle e-waste“ published in Down to Earth on 31st August 2021.
What is the News?
IIT Madras is developing an online platform called “e-Source” to tackle electronic wastes (e-waste) by linking stakeholders in the formal and informal economy.
About e-Source Platform:
- e-Source is an exchange platform that will serve as an online marketplace for waste electrical and electronic equipment. It will also facilitate a formal supply chain between various stakeholders (buyers and sellers).
- Led by: The initiative is being led by Indo-German Centre for Sustainability (IGCS) which is located at the IIT-Madras campus.
- Funded by: It is funded by the Government of India’s Department for Science and Technology and the German Academic Exchange Service.
What was the need for this initiative?
- Currently, the world generates 53.6 million tonnes of e-waste every year. This is expected to double in the next 16 years. Around 85% of this e-waste is being lost globally.
- Moreover, E-waste is also a pressing issue in India. It is the world’s third-largest producer of e-waste. But only 5% of its e-waste is recycled properly.
Significance of this platform:
- The platform uses machine learning for better traceability of e-waste. This will help increase the opportunities for the repair and re-use of e-waste.
- The platform will also potentially:
- Improve livelihoods for youth and women in peri-urban settings by upgrading their skills and improving occupational health and safety,
- Reduce the flow of toxic materials in waste streams, and
- Broaden the market for affordable, second-hand e-devices.