Electrical waste (ewaste) is the fastest growing waste stream in the world. The UK is the second highest producer of ewaste globally, throwing away 350,000 tonnes of electricals a year.
From smartphones to single use vapes, a disposable culture is contributing to an increasing environmental problem. It is estimated that 1.3 million vapes are thrown away each week in the UK. Aside from these environmental concerns, ewaste is as a barrier to digital inclusion. Ten million people in the UK are digitally excluded and yet there are millions of unused and working electrical items hoarded in UK homes that could be redistributed to provide access to technology. Businesses are also starting to take action, but are the right systems in place to help them?
Green Alliance recently hosted an event with Material Focus, the not for profit which works to transform the way we think about electrical waste, to explore the challenges and attitudes around ewaste. In this episode we speak to Scott Butler, executive director of Material Focus, to recap on the debate and delve deeper into this growing problem and what we can do about it.