Watchdog Supports "E-Waste" Recycling, Export to Africa

I'm not sure people paid attention to this story about fair trade recycling, "e-waste" and Ethiopia.

Bullet Points:
  1. EPA Administrator Lisa P. Jackson toured a well run "e-waste" shop in Ethiopia.
  2. Basel Action Network (via this blog) takes credit, applauds their role with this shop.
  3. I applaud it too, as proof that the "Geeks of Color" can do this work.
  4. BAN responds, saying that their African e-waste shop is good, but WR3A's aren't
  5. BAN has never been to one of our shops, nor to several they have attacked.  I say so.
  6. BAN (outrageously) accuses me of re-writing the blog post they had commented on.
  7. I prove "did not".  Screen shots of the date of comment, and of last edit of the blog.
  8. Pouting ensues on both coasts.
So, the Ethiopia "e-waste" shop creates good jobs, digital access, without polluting?   "Not polluting" is too tame a praise.   The recycling is constructively good for the environment, creating jobs both in the developed nations which export, and in the African countries that receive it.  Compare the jobs created by the Ethiopia (BAN-supported) electronics recycling trade, ton per ton, with the jobs created by shredding PCs (then sending the pieces to be sorted in China - the end market for "no intact unit").

Has Robin Turned into an Apologist for Bad E-waste?

During the past 10 years, my posts and articles have gone from mainly critical of "toxics along for the ride", aimed at villain "sham" recyclers, to being mainly defensive of the Technicians overseas who are having their businesses attacked inappropriately by well-intentioned environmentalists.

I've directed most of my fire lately at people in leadership positions, who should really know better than to describe contract manufacturing factories as polluters.  But I'm not happy being so critical of an environmental movement which, for the most part, has the finest possible intentions.  And we all agree that shipping junk to people who don't want it and cannot deal with it is a bad, bad thing.

I'm not against interracial marriage.  I'm against abusive relationships.  To the degree people are marrying someone from a lower caste in order to take advantage of weakness, I'm against that.  I just don't think you ban marriage outside of race, class, or nationality as a response to anecdotes of spousal abuse.

2005: Liftoff of Fair Trade Recycling

Here is a link to the first article about "fair trade recycling", originally appearing in Recycling Today and also picked up by Entrepreneur magazine   It would mark the kickoff of WR3A, the World Reuse, Repair and Recycling Association, incorporated in Vermont, to create partnerships for proper reuse and recycling between developed and emerging nations.

WR3A was very well received by overseas buyers, who wanted to cooperate with USA sellers to increase quality and bring legitimacy to their large scale refurbishing businesses.

Helplessly Hoping for Job Advice

This blog-end starts at the top.  If in doubt, take the job that is "more different".  It may or may not build your portfolio, but it's guaranteed to add value from new perspectives.  My jobs as janitor,  truck driver, and office executive... I'd call them all "ingredients".  That a lesson of Hesse's Siddhartha.

Vermont Sting: Illegal "E-Waste" Robot Seizure

[APRIL FOOLS TRADITION Middlebury, Vermont 4/1/2011 ]  Vermont Environmental Police have broken up an illegal "e-waste" reuse operation, in a sting targeted at Middlebury's Good Point Recycling.

Police helicopters and SWAT teams brought excitement to the small town of Middlebury, Vermont.  Film of break-dancing "ewaste" devices shocked local leaders, who had no idea that dangerous reuse was taking place in their own community.

The focus of the sting was Manoi-Go, a stage 11 artificial intelligence robot crafted in northern Japan. Manoi-Go was surrounded by Green Mountain State e-waste police forces wearing hazardous waste "moon suits". Manoi-Go was pursued, moon-walking, into a corner of Good Point's ebay resale department.  Hours later, Manoi-Go would be toe-tagged and taped into a three-ply  box, slapped with a label "Danger, Contains E-Waste".

Waste-o-Matic: Solution to E-Waste Reuse

A simple solution to "ewaste"!  No more tricky repairs, donations, testing, reuse.   No hand disassembly to keep valuable parts.   No risk of being accused of leaving junk on overseas containers (unless you want to see where the shredded pieces go).  Waste-o-matic is a must-have tool for today's new "obsolescence class".

Don't let reuse and repair be labelled "haz waste" in Vermont.