Mau dibawa kemana Lagi barang bekas ini ?

Kalau di Indonesia, banyak TPA (Tempat Pembuangan Sampah) yang ditolak warga sekitar. Pemerintah Daerah berlomba-lomba mencari daerah alternatif yang penduduk sekitanya "cukup ramah" dengan segala jenis kotoran ini. Bagaimana dengan jenis sampah yang satu ini?

Mungkin "berbeda" jika sampah tersebut adalah sampah elektronik. Suatu kota di daratan China sana teramat ramah untuk menerima sampah ini dari negara-negara IT terkemuka, Jepang, Korea, dan Amerika Serikat. Silahkan baca selengkapnya tulisan berikut :

E-Waste: The Dark Side of Technology

GUIYU, China – The wastes arrive here by sea transport, mainly from North America, Japan and South Korea.
They sail across the Pacific Ocean in huge colorful containers and reach Hong Kong where they are moved into the storage areas of the largest commercial harbor in China, waiting before proceeding with their journey toward the Chinese hinterland.

During the day, along the terminal area leading to the dock, there is a constant coming and going of trucks commuting between the city and the rural areas of the Guangdong province.

That’s the place where dozens of millions of tons of electronic junk (e-waste) from all over the world are taken: computers, phones, televisions, printers, refrigerators and an infinite row of other obsolete devices destined to disposal or recovery of the precious metals inside their circuits.

Guiyu is a small town situated a few hours from Hong Kong. As soon as you leave the main road that cuts through the countryside and arrive in town, you can find yourself in a post-apocalyptic scenario where the only signs of civilization that remain are huge mountains of rubble made of tubes, plastic and silicon.

Guiyu is the largest electronic garbage collector in the world. Each year about 100,000 workers, including many children, are involved in the disposal operations and recovery of over 1.5 million tons of materials coming from the consumer technology industry, a quantity that is around 80% of the e-waste produced in a year by the entire China.

The processing of materials is performed using techniques that are not adequate and that over two decades have transformed this small plot of land located in the heart of China in one of the most polluted and unlivable areas of the planet.

In Guiyu the air you breathe leaves the taste of acid fumes in your mouth, resulting from uncontrolled combustion of plastics and metals. The water is not drinkable. The level of poisoning of groundwater has forced the authorities to prohibit even agricultural use. The incidence on the population of serious blood disorders and cancer is among the highest in the whole world.

Guiyu is just the most notorious example, but similar sites, according to a recent Greenpeace report, are located, in a more or less official way, in many other developing areas such as Pakistan, India and Nigeria. These are the landfills of the world, the places where every technologically obsolete device ends its life, and where all means are legitimate.

For the more developed countries they represent nothing more than an investment with a very low cost, a mere matter of economic convenience that also lowers internal environmental impact. The sum of shipping costs and the entire process of disposal is by far less than what it would take to deal with the same materials in their places of origin.

For the countries that do import such wastes, e-waste is merely a business opportunity that feeds a gloomy total market value estimated at millions of dollars every year and causing untold damage to the environment and the quality of life of the people involved.

Some years ago PlanetFunk shot the video of their popular song “Stop Me” in Guiyu. With this data in our hands, maybe it’s time to say “Please, stop”.

Author: Antonio Lupetti @woork
© 2010 Woork Up

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About Loenbun Saja

Ulayat Adalah Organisasi Non Pemerintah yang didirikan pada tanggal 26 januari 2000 di Bengkulu. Aktivitas utama Ulayat meliputi pelayanan masyarakat di dalam dan sekitar hutan, melakukan pemantauan kasus-kasus kehutanan dan perkebunan, melakukan inventarisasi model-model pengelolaan sumberdaya alam berbasis rakyat dan advokasi kebijakan lingkungan di Indonesia.
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