Ghana: Safe and sound recycling and disposal of WEEE scrap

Agbogbloshie in Ghana remains tragically famous for being one of the most toxic locations in our world. The people working and living on this electronic scrap dumpsite, among them many children, are facing a dire future. Few income alternatives, ongoing illegal imports of WEEE amounts by local and international networks and a lack of any HSE measures for the informal sector are just some reasons for that. As part of a dedicated team consisting of local and international experts such as GOPA Infra and Ramboll, BlackForest Solutions supports as a technical advisor to improve the conditions on site. The main target is to implement processes that mitigate toxic emissions on the dumpsite, which are especially caused by open burning of electronic scrap. The 3 years projects is funded by German development bank KfW and is conducted in close cooperation with Ghanaian stakeholders.

Project details

Electronic waste landfill

Electronic waste landfills mostly occur in developing countries and are often a hotspot for heavy metal contamination, uncontrolled burning of plastic housings, cables etc. to release valuable materials by the local informal sector.

Hazardous waste in WEEE amounts

Electronic waste does not only often contain masses of flame-retardant plastic types, but also directly hazardous waste components. Often electronic devices contain heavy metals and other possibly harmful substances, which need to be collected separately during a recycling or disposal process.

Processing of WEEE

Processing WEEE amounts usually requires either extensive manual working force (disassembly) or relatively advanced technologies. In both cases, especially with WEEE, strict HSE measures must be respected and implemented in favor of both the staff and the surrounding population.