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Article on Devastating Effects of Improper Electronics Recycling

According to Michael Smith and Isabella Cota, Bloomberg Businessweek, dated November 14, 2016:

R2 (Responsible Recycling) follows an international standard for the proper recycling of electronics.  When you work with a R2 Certified company it truly makes a difference.  

See the article below for a glimpse into a world rarely seen here in the U.S.  This is the result of improper electronics recycling and the dire effects on human health and the environment.  This is recycling done by companies who are not certified and in it only for money with no standards and who use other countries as their dumping ground.

"Jesús Gómez—El Tanque to anyone who knows him—navigates around 60 tons of junked electronics to see what’s going on outside. Sweaty young men have just dumped two huge sacks of spent Motorola cable-TV boxes on the street here, in Colonia Renovación, a neighborhood in Mexico City. Gómez watches as eight men and a woman sit in a circle under an intense sun, breaking the boxes apart with ball-peen hammers and chisels. They work to the beat of banda, Mexico’s heartthrob country music, wrenching out bits of copper, metal, and circuitry. Gómez will find buyers for all of it. Shards of metal and plastic fly. Metallic-tasting dust hangs in the air.

Just inside his shop, Gómez’s 3-year-old grandson, Alexis, plays around a teetering pile of mangled steel computer casings. The boy’s mother, eight months pregnant, sits on a pile of junked PCs, untangling a mass of old phone chargers. She’s hemmed in by electronic waste, or e-waste, stacked two stories high inside a tin-roofed space the size of a three-car garage. Outside the workshop are more piles, and there are yet more in the street; the junk seems to pour in constantly, some of it from around Mexico City and a lot from much farther. Gómez’s younger brother and business partner, Genovevo, points to some Epson printers trapped in the heap, way above his head. They’re from Texas, he says; the shop has bought dozens of truckloads of e-waste from north of the border in the past two years. “The gringos throw it out,” Genovevo says. “We do the dirty work of breaking it apart.”"

For the complete article and photos, click here:  2016-ewaste-mexico





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