|E-Stewards Abandons Morality|
Aside from the acknowledgement of the current legality of these exports under the Basel Convention, what is their case for amending it and banning repair and reuse in the future?
According to BAN E-Stewards, it is because refurbishers (geeks of color) "often produce hazardous waste, which is responsible for inflicting tremendous harm on the citizens and environments in these nations." It's because reuse and repair poisons people and pollutes the environment.
"Only recyclers meeting the requirements of the e-Stewards Standard are in conformity with the Ban Amendment, which stipulates that no hazardous waste, including e-waste, can be sent from developed to developing countries. This includes untested and/or non-working equipment exported for refurbishment or reuse, some of which is currently allowed under the R2 Standard. Refurbishment often produces hazardous waste, which is responsible for inflicting tremendous harm on the citizens and environments of these nations."Logically, if it were true that the refurbishing and repair industries "inflict tremendous harm on citizens and the environment", then banning import/export from rich nations is not enough. They should also be banned from repair and refurbishing of product in their own country. And in America, reuse and refurbishment should also, logically, be banned.
Show us "tremendous harm" in Indonesia. Show us the hazardous waste "often" produced by refurbishment. Show us how the Basel Convention, as passed, needs to be amended due to a single actual case of poison. There is absolutely not one shred of evidence that one iota of toxic release came from refurbishing, repair, and elective upgrade. No such factory was found at Guiyu, and no material at Guiyu came from such a factory. This is why the Convention (the international law currently passed) does indeed allow export for reuse.
The Worlds Most Polluted Places (TIME) are metal mines, not recycling yards.
Contract manufacturers and refurbishers exponentially reduce pollution compared to manufacture of new product, and produce higher quality, longer-lasting electronics than "tested working" sold by E-Stewards. It is a despicable lie that any harm, much less "tremendous harm", has been tied to warranty returns and refurbishment. Basel Action Network would ban export back to factories which originally made the items, it would ban them from offering warranty returns.
Moreover, "tested working" would do nothing to stop it, since the refurbishing factories buy "tested working" units and, surprise surprise, upgrade them to the same new status, in the precise, utter, exact fashion they would non-working. In addition, "tested working" would allow export of units which are working but don't meet the refurbishing factory standards AT ALL.
There is absolutely no excuse for this defamation of geeks and technicians overseas. This is falsehood. This is an utter shame to the environmental movement, accusing contract manufacturing facilities which buy back their old product ("manufacture takeback") for reuse and refurbishment and responsible maintenance. This would demonize the repair of water pumps in Africa, as profiled by the Atlantic and IFIXIT.
It's going to be another excuse for another dictator to close down internet cafes. SHAME.
Here is BAN's efforts to take on and destroy our fair trade project. They use big pictures and tell more falsehoods about the percentage of exports which are bad, and show burning of 20 year old equipment in tiny volumes, implying it's straight off the boat from Europe. They will probably succeed in slamming the door to development on Africa, because they never studied how Singapore and South Korea did it, and they convince Africans that they are being victimized. They make it up as they go along.
Cell phone repair in Beijing (TechTravels blog). Where is the pollution?