«Informal e-waste management Lagos & Freiburg, June 2011 in Lagos, Nigeria – socio-economic impacts and feasibility of inter- national recycling ...»
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Informal e-waste management Lagos & Freiburg, June 2011
in Lagos, Nigeria – socio-economic
impacts and feasibility of inter-
national recycling co-operations Final report of component 3 of the UNEP SBC E-waste Africa Project
Andreas Manhart (Öko-Institut e.V.) Prof. Dr. Oladele Osibanjo (BCCC-Nigeria) Dr. Adeyinka Aderinto (University of Ibadan) Siddharth Prakash (Öko-Institut e.V.) Socio-economic assessment and feasibility study June 2011 on sustainable e-waste management in Nigeria Table of contents Acknowledgements VI List of acronyms and abbreviations IX Executive Summary XI 1 Introduction 1 1.1 Background of the study 3 1.2 Objectives and methodological approach 4 1.2.1 Socio-economic assessment 5 1.2.2 Analysis and feasibility of recycling technologies 7 2 Definitions 8 2.1 Collectors 8 2.2 Refurbishers 9 2.3 Recyclers 10 3 E-waste management in Lagos, Nigeria – an overview 12 3.1 Import of new, used and obsolete equipment 12 3.2 Refurbishing of used and obsolete equipment 13 3.2.1 Alaba Market 13 3.2.2 Westminster
Acknowledgements The study “Informal e-waste management in Lagos, Nigeria – socio-economic impacts and feasibility of international recycling co-operations” was developed in the framework of the project entitled "Building local capacity to address the flow of e-wastes and electrical and electronic products destined for reuse in selected African countries and augment the sustainable management of resources through the recovery of materials in e-wastes". The project is funded through the generous support of the European Commission, Norway, the United Kingdom, and the Dutch Recyclers Association (NVMP), together with the support of the Secretariat of the Basel Convention which provided an overall coordination to the project.
Technical support for the preparation of this document was provided by the Institute for Applied Ecology (the Öko-Institut) and the Basel Convention Coordinating Centre For Training Technology Transfer for the African Region based in Nigeria (BCCC Nigeria). Other partners participating in the project include the Basel Convention Regional Centre for French speaking African countries based in Senegal (BCRC Senegal), the Swiss Federal Laboratories for Materials Science and Technology (EMPA), the European Union Network for the Implementation and Enforcement of Environmental Law (IMPEL), the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO), and the Partnership for Action on Computing Equipment (PACE).
Many people and organisations supported this project. Special thanks go to the field team who conducted the interviews and surveys within Lagos. This work was of crucial importance
for the process and the outcomes of this study. The team consisted of the following persons:
In addition, many other persons and organisations actively supported the project in various
ways including provision of data, scientific input and logistics. Special thanks go to:
John A. Odey, Honourable Minister, Federal Ministry of Environment, Abuja;
Dr. Nathaniel Biodun Olorunfemi, Permanent Secretary, Federal Ministry of Environment, Abuja;
Later Alhaji M.S. Bashar, Permanent Secretary, Federal Ministry of Environment, Abuja;
Dr. O. O. Dada, Director Pollution Control and Environmental Health Department, Federal Ministry of Environment, Abuja;
Dr. Ngeri S. Benebo, Director General, National Environmental Standards and Regulations Enforcement Agency (NESREA), Abuja;
Mulikat Adegoke, Deputy Comptroller General, Nigeria Customs Service, Abuja;
Architect S.M. Danhassan, General Manager, Health Safety and Environment (HSE), Nigerian Ports Authority, Lagos;
E. A. Edozie, Deputy General Manager,(HSE), Nigerian Ports Authority, Lagos;
Engr Rasheed Adebola Shabi, General Manager, Lagos State Environmental Protection Agency (LASEPA);
Olanrewaju Oresanya, Managing Director, Lagos State Waste Management Authority (LAWMA);
Chief Emeka Dike, President-General of Alaba International Amalgamated Market Association;
Executive members, Alaba International Amalgamated Market Association;
Executive members, Computer and Allied Products Association of Nigeria;
Executive members, Westminster Market Association;
Steven Art, Umicore Precious Metal Refining;
Christoph Becker, RAL Quality Assurance Association for the Demanufacture of Refrigeration Equipment;
Ramon Coolen, Sims Recycling Solutions;
Thomas Grammig, Consultant;
Christina Meskers, Umicore Precious Metal Refining;
Nikolaus Obermayr, USG Umweltservice GmbH;
Segun Odeyingbo, Student;
Frans Timmermans, Sims Recycling Solutions;
Kris Wouters, Elmet s.l.
The contents of the study “Informal e-waste management in Lagos, Nigeria – socio-economic impacts and feasibility of international recycling co-operations” are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the views or policies of the Secretariat of the Basel Convention, UNEP, the United Nations, or the European Union nor are they an official record. Information contained in this document has been compiled from sources believed to be reliable; therefore neither the Secretariat of the Basel Convention, UNEP, the United Nations, nor the European Union can be responsible for the absolute correctness or sufficiency of such information.
The designations employed and the presentation do not imply the expression of any opinion whatsoever on the part of the Secretariat of the Basel Convention, UNEP, the United Nations, or the European Union concerning the status and policies of any commercial or legal entity, the legal status of any country, territory or city or its authority, or concerning the delimitation of its frontiers or boundaries.
RoHS Restriction of Hazardous Substances Directive SBC Secretariat of the Basel Convention S-LCA Social Life Cycle Assessment SMEs Small and Medium Enterprises UNDP United Nations Development Programme UNEP United Nations Environment Programme VCS Voluntary Carbon Standard WEEE Waste Electrical and Electronic Equipments WSIS World Summit on the Information Society
1000 Naira = US$ 6.72
Executive Summary Lagos is the one of the world’s largest cities and the economic centre of Nigeria. With its 17.5 million inhabitants and considerable economic growth rates in the last years, the local consumption of electrical and electronic equipment (EEE) reached high levels in absolute figures. While this growth is desirable from a development perspective and in particular regarding living standard and access to Information and Communication Technologies (ICTs), it also raises the question on sound end-of-life solutions which are not yet in place in the country.
In addition to the local consumption, Logos has developed into West Africa’s main entry point for used and end-of-life electrical and electronic equipment. Although this equipment is mostly refurbished and sold to households and traders from Nigeria and other West and Central African countries, this sector generates significant amounts of e-waste, a problem that was first brought to public attention in 2005 with the film “The digital dump” by the NGO Basel Action Network (BAN).
In the course of the debate, the European Commission, the Governments of Norway and the United Kingdom, and the Dutch Association for the Disposal of Metal and Electrical Products (NVMP) financed the E-waste Africa Project, which is managed by the Secretariat of the Basel Convention (SBC). The project is a comprehensive programme of activities aiming at enhancing environmental governance of e-wastes and at creating favourable social and economic conditions for partnerships and small businesses in the recycling sector in Africa.
This study is integral part of the E-waste Africa Project and contains an in-depth socioeconomic study on the functioning and the sustainability impacts of the informal EEErefurbishing and e-waste recycling sector in Lagos, as well as a comparison of currently practiced and best available recycling technologies. By combining these types of analysis, the report derives “best applicable technologies” regarded suitable for the implementation in the Nigerian context. In addition, the report formulates recommendations to policy-makers, the Nigerian recycling industry and for pilot follow-up activities.
From a methodological perspective, the socio-economic study made use of the methodology provided by the UNEP/SETAC “Guidelines for Social Life Cycle Assessment of Products”.
Additionally, some methodological gaps related to the use of indicators were filled using ÖkoInstitut’s methodology PROSA (product sustainability assessment). For the purpose of this study, three key stakeholder categories were defined to assess the socio-economic impacts of the refurbishing and e-waste recycling sector in Lagos: workers, local communities, and society. The data was collected during 135 interviews conducted between May and December 2010.
Generally, refurbishing, collection, and recycling of used and end-of-life e-products takes place in and around certain business clusters. The most prominent of these clusters are Alaba Market and Ikeja Computer Village, which comprise 2,500 and 3,000 small businesses in the field of refurbishing and marketing of used electrical and electronic products. The socalled Westminster Market located close to the port is another hub for imported second-hand equipment, as well as Lawanson Market, a mid-sized second-hand market for used EEE.
The majority of refurbished products stem from imports via the ports of Lagos. The interim results from project component 2, the Nigerian e-Waste Country Assessment, show that 70% of all the imported used equipment is functional and is sold to consumers after testing. 70% of the non-functional share can be repaired within the major markets and is also sold to consumers. 9% of the total imports of used equipment is non-repairable and is directly passed on to collectors and recyclers.
The e-waste collection and recycling activities in Lagos are largely organised around the main sources of obsolete electrical and electronic products. Most of these activities are carried out by informal waste collectors (commonly referred to as ‘scavengers’) who move all around Lagos with handcarts collecting e-waste together with other metal-containing wastes.
Mostly, these collectors buy such obsolete devices for small amounts of money from businesses or private households. In addition, there are also collectors that – due to financial limitations – cannot pay for metal-containing wastes and therefore focus on what is freely available, e.g. on roadside waste dumps. As the city of Lagos is too large to easily bring the collected materials to a central recycling site, this informal collection system makes use of many small- and medium-sized scrap metal yards, where metal-containing wastes are manually dismantled, sorted, stored and sold to traders. Fractions of no value to the workers are discarded or burned. The informal waste collectors compete with a quite efficient official waste collection organised by the Lagos State Waste Management Authority (LAWMA), which delivers the collected waste to three official dumpsites in Lagos. There, waste picker communities that live on or next to the dump sites take out all fractions of value, including ewaste. Here too, dismantled and assorted e-waste is sold to traders. Fractions of no value to the waste collectors are thrown back on the dumpsite. The e-waste recyclers operating in scrap metal yards, on dumpsites or in recycling sites around second-hand markets disassemble obsolete electrical and electronic equipment in order to liberate metals that can be sold to traders. In particular, the ambition focuses on steel, aluminium and copper. Often, cables and other plastic parts are incinerated to liberate copper. In addition, certain types of printed wiring boards (PWBs) are separated, collected, and sold to traders. Wet chemical leaching processes, often associated with the recovery of precious metals from PWBs, have not been observed in Lagos.
In terms of working conditions, there is a clear distinction between the refurbishing sector that buys and repairs/refurbishes used EEE and the collection and recycling business: As working in the refurbishing sector requires a certain level of technical skills, workers are XII Socio-economic assessment and feasibility study June 2011 on sustainable e-waste management in Nigeria normally paid between US$ 2.22 and 3.36 per day, which is mostly better than the average income of e-waste collectors and recyclers, who earn between US$ 0.22 and 3.36 per day.
Although the differences seem to be of minor importance, a view on social security systems and job perspectives alter this valuation: While refurbishers usually receive a fixed salary, collectors and recyclers are usually self-employed, and therefore experience large day-today income fluctuations. Furthermore, persons working in the refurbishing sector often have the possibility to set-up their own small business, which often increases their daily income to around US$ 6.72 to 22.2. Here it is noteworthy that the sector has its own apprenticeship system, which produces around 2,000 alumni per year. Although apprentices often do not earn money during their education, they are usually provided with food and shelter and are granted a start-up budget after finishing training.