Ewaste Legislation in Costa Rica

Costa Rica recently became the first Latin American country to pass e-scrap recycling legislation with the enactment of Regulation No. 35933-S (link in Spanish). The country’s Ministry of Health is now responsible for setting rules for the management of end-of-life electronics, covering a long list of electronic goods including desktop and laptop computers, monitors (CRT and flat screen), batteries and chargers, cell phones, printers and copiers, digital cameras and even overhead projectors.

A city council in the U.K. has been connected to the alleged illegal export of e-scrap to Ghana. The Plymouth City Council has been ordered by its Environment Agency to pay $17,400 ($US) in fines after being caught selling waste electronics to unauthorized processors, who are being investigated for illegally exporting broken electronic goods to Ghana.

“There were serious management failures at both these civic amenity sites as a result of negligence on the part of the council,” said Matthew Lee for the Environment Agency. “The purpose of the WEEE Regulations is to ensure waste is properly recycled in the U.K. and doesn’t end up in places like Africa.”

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