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Kenya: Nema to Issue Electronic Waste Rules
Source: The Star
Source Date: Thursday, October 18, 2012
Focus: Institution and HR Management
Country: Kenya
Created: Oct 19, 2012

THE National Environmental Management Authority plans to introduce new rules to control electronic waste in the country. The regulations will compel all electronic gadgets importers including mobile operators and phone manufacturers to follow up on the life cycle of the devices from point of entry up to their appropriate disposal. The draft regulations are expected be finalised by the end of this year. Ayub Macharia, director of Environmental education and information at Nema said institutions will also be monitored to ensure electronic goods repair maintenance is given priority over disposal especially in institutions. "The challenge in Kenya is that the budget for maintenance of e-products is very low compared to the budget for new goods,we should invest in maintenance," said Macharia. "When the current environmental act was made, e-waste was not such a big issue, the new rules will be an addition," he said. The regulations seem to be targeting the Information and Communications sector where there many changes coming every day, the most recent being the switch off of counterfeit phones. This is likely to see over 1.8 million thrown away. According to United Nations Environmental Program in 2010, Kenya's e-waste was composed of approximately 11,400 tonnes from refrigerators, 2800 tonnes from TVs, 2500 tonnes from personal computers, 500 tonnes from printers and 150 tonnes from mobile phones. The Environment Act stipulates a general penalty for poor waste managements as fine of up to Sh300 000 and hazardous waste penalty goes up to sh1 million.
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