HP Kenya launches e-waste recycling initiative
INNOVATIONS| Nov. 9, 2010, 7:49 p.m.
By Carole Kimutai, Nairobi, Kenya
Hewlett Packard (HP) has announced plans to start an East African Computer Recycling (EACR) plant next month in partnership with Camara Education, an Irish volunteer organisation that uses technology to deliver education more effectively to disadvantaged communities in Africa.
EACR will officially open and operate Kenya’ s first IT e-waste recycling facility by the end of 2010, with the goal of improving health, safety and recycling standards and establishing a local, sustainable IT e-waste recycling industry.
“ HP is very excited that with the EACR, we will demonstrate that proper IT electronic waste management is an opportunity to generate local income and employment, while addressing current health and environmental impacts,” said Ken Mbwaya, HP Managing Director East Africa.
The EACR IT e-waste recycling facility is located in Kenya’ s coastal town of Mombasa. It will receive end of life IT from Camara Education’ s schools, business and public sector customers and the informal sector. With the aim of working to HP-approved health, safety and environmental standards, the IT e-waste will be assessed for reuse and refurbished if appropriate. End of life products will be dismantled and separated into the different parts, including plastics and metals.
The parts requiring more complex recycling processes will be sent to facilities with the technology to retrieve the valuable resources. The long-term aim of the facility is to be capturing up to 20 per cent of IT e-waste in Kenya.
“ Providing IT e-waste recycling is a logical extension of our current work in providing technology for schools across Kenya. Our engagement with HP will allow us to manage our own end of life equipment from schools and provide a local service where there is currently no provision for IT e-waste recycling, said Eoghan Crosby, Technical Director, Camara Education.
A key element of this process is to encourage workers in the informal sector to understand the benefits of different approaches to IT e-waste recycling, both from a personal safety perspective, but also in terms of the economic benefits. For example, HP and Camara Education will educate workers that delivering whole products to EACR will have greater value, because formal break-up processes will ensure more value is extracted from collected materials and will minimise the human and environmental impact.
With the majority of IT electronic waste entering Africa today unregulated and economies across the continent growing, there is a critical need to look at developing formal recycling processes. The establishment of EACR in Mombasa will provide Kenya with an opportunity to be at the forefront of developing new standards for IT e-waste recycling that help to protect those working in the industry and enable Kenyans to benefit from the economic opportunities.
HP successfully runs electronic recycling projects in over 52 countries across the world. Through the HP Planet Partners return and recycling program, launched in 1987, the company has a corporate goal to recycle 2 billion pounds (900,000 tonnes) of hardware and HP print cartridges globally by 2010. To date 1,435 million pounds (650,000 tonnes) have been recycled and more than 275 million pounds (125,000 tonnes) have been reused. In total, more than 1.71 billion pounds have been recovered.
Camara operates as a social enterprise and operates in two distinct business lines: ‘ Education Delivery’ and ‘ Computer Reuse’ . The connection between these two, seemingly disparate activities is 'Technology'.
MORE INNOVATIONS NEWS
2015 Youth mHealth Innovation competition now onBotswana’s 2015 mHealth Innovation Competition has been launched with much promise from those taking part to excel beyond limit. Read More
Two African leaders unite to boost innovation on the continentThe UCT Graduate School of Business and MTN have formed a multi-million rand partnership to catalyse sustainable innovation in emerging markets. Read More
Africa 118 launches online business directoryYou can now find local services in Uganda at the click of the button, with the launch of Africa 118’s online directory. Read More
Agriculture startups stand to win $50,000 each in seed fundingInnovators have two weeks left to apply for an accelerator programme for agriculture in East Africa. Read More
Airtel, UP Magazine to award key change-makersAirtel has partnered with UP Magazine to launch a first of its kind awards to reward innovative elements in Kenyan society. Read More
MasterCard launches $50m fund to boost rural financial servicesThe MasterCard Foundation has launched a US$50 million challenge fund to improve the lives of smallholder farmers by enabling businesses to begin or expand financial services in rural areas of Sub-Saharan Africa. Read More
Ghanaian startup Beam heads for Seedstars World FinalSeedstars World, the most exclusive startup competition for emerging markets and fast growing startups, is bringing Ghana-based startup Beam to Geneva for its Final Event on February 4. Read More
Minister tours Botswana Innovation Hub projectsBotswana’s Minister of Infrastructure, Science and Technology, Hon. Nonofo Molefhi, took time for a tour of some of the Botswana Innovation Hub (BIH) projects on a familiarisation mission. Read More
Safaricom launches ideas portalSafaricom has launched an interactive portal dubbed Zindua Café through which external innovators and developers will be able to share their ideas, applications and prototypes with Safaricom. Read More
FEATURED STORY2bn priced out of internet access
A new report from the Alliance for Affordable Internet shows that the price of broadband remains prohibitive for billions in developing and emerging countries, with women and rural dwellers hardest hit.
BEST READ NEWS
IN DEPTHKenya’s digital TV battle hots up
Kenya’s journey to Digital TV broadcasting took a new turn this week, when the Communication Authority of Kenya (CAK) accused three local media firms of intent to disrupt the process.