The Assistant Manager, planning/Policy and Focal Point Base Convention in the United Nations Convention on trans-boundary movement of hazardous waste has disclosed that Liberia has been declared by the Basel Convention as one of the West Africa countries that are heavily affected by the input of outdated and sub-standard electronic products many of whom contain elements such as lead that is known to be very harmful to the environment.
Presenting an overview of a two-day National Stakeholders Consultative Meeting intended to discuss and develop a roadmap for effective management of e-waste in Liberia by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), Jefferson F. Nyandibo, noted that huge importation of these products is also said to have led to the generation of large volume of electronic waste in the sub-region.
“As we all are aware, solid waste management is indeed a major challenge for African cities and governments due to the huge budgetary implications. Therefore, the generation of these specialized waste such as electronic and hazardous waste in Liberia with no management system in place further complicates the already existing poor waste management situation confronting the country” Nyandibo added.
He said that in order for Liberia to be eligible for international support for the management of Electronic Waste (e-waste) in the country, there is a need to develop a national strategic framework by key stakeholders to support the management of E-waste in the country.
According to Nyandibo, when developed, the roadmap will help to inform the international community and possibly attract the needed support for the appropriate actions to manage e-waste in Liberia.
Presentations at the two-day events include: what is e-waste, its origin, and consequences on the country and its people; how can Liberia establish an institutional framework for collaboration in controlling and regulating the importation of used electronic product in the country; and chemical composition of electronic products and their effect on the environment.
Quantifying e-waste globally and defining the health and environmental implications; and the importance of establishing an institutional framework for collaboration in controlling importation of used EEE in Liberia (learning from best practices) Ghana, India, Europe and America.
Facilitators of the meeting were: Mr. Jefferson f. Nyandibo, Focal point Basel Convention, Madam Katherine Sawyer, National Consultant and Mr. Jerry Toe, Focal Point Stockholm Convention.
The meeting which was held from July 5-6, 2018 brought together participants from the Ministry of Commerce, Liberia Revenue Authority (LRA), EPA, LIBA, UMU, NPA, Shape Show Room, Custom Brokers Union, Labra Sanitation, artesian fishermen, among others.