Breaking News: As HK WEEETRF, So Follows Accra's "Ewaste" Moon Shot?

Another logical conclusion to all the research into NGO's proposed bans on E-Waste Exprot Trade.

"Hey, we can do it right.  We can repair and recycle better than you can"

As goes Hong Kong, so goes Agbogbloshie, Accra, Ghana.  A $30M State of the Art E-Scrap Recycling Plant is breaking ground in Ghana.   In January, I'll be there.
The Ministry of Environment, Science, Technology and Innovation in partnership with the Environmental Protection Agency are set to commission the construction of a recycling facility at Agbogbloshie in the Greater Accra Region. 
Estimated at $30 million for the first phase, the facility is expected to recycle all waste electrical and electronic equipment to final products in an environmentally sound manner, relieving the people of Accra and its environs, specifically Agbogbloshie community of toxic pollutants generated from the burning of e-waste. - See more at:
Once again, the solution to "sweatshops" is found to be "air conditioners".  Given the choice between moving business back to "Big Shred" in Europe and the USA, the Tech Sector in Emerging Markets says "Thanks but we like managing this, and by the way we're really, really good at it".

Finally the End of Ewastegate?

Of course these "big government projects" are not always what they are cracked up to be... Caveat Emptor applies to Chinese and African "big government project" industrial park solutions.  Maybe it's premature, but the logic is the logic of Fair Trade Recycling, not Basel Ban Amendment.  And its the logic that repeats itself each time.

Several of the blogs this summer referenced Hong Kong's "Moon Shot" E-waste Recycling investment.  The ultimate irony about the sensationalized reports about e-scrap imported to Hong Kong was that the press that followed BAN around New Territories was never told about the $550M EcoPark investment under construction.  Not even respected journals like Recycling Today, Recycling International, or E-Scrap News have really covered it.   To quote yours truly, in the article on Motherboard in 2011

That was in reference to CBS 60 Minutes going to Guangdong in 2008 and failing to visit a single billion dollar SKD (semi-knockdown) factory there.   A few years later, BAN commented about these "alleged" facilities in a retort to the article above (to Chicago Patch in 2012).

Summers then criticized Ingenthron... for promoting the "myth that there are all these wonderful high-tech facilities in China,' adding more harsh comments about Ingenthron's character.
"They will lie right through their teeth," Summers said. "It's amazing — I've seen it. Robin Ingenthron is known as a really crazy guy — sorry, I don't like dissing folks, but he is a huge outlier."
Donald Summers issues apology.

Also see Jim Puckett's attacks on academics (Josh Lepawsky, Reed Miller, Eric Williams, Ramzy Kahat, etc) who study the evidence on his widely discredited claims that exports are "80% illegal dumping".

The importers don't buy it -- any more than they would buy a container of 80% non-repairable electronics.  The economics don't support it. The NGO is sucking millions of dollars in "certification fees" to insure everyone from something which either isn't happening, or is happening in ways that are improving faster than the NGO can document.

It's been 18 months since my last visit to Agbogbloshie, which resulted in some documentary footage and coincided with some honest reporting by Adam Minter and Jon Spaull, some recognition that Grace Akese and Emmanuel Eric Nyaletey are more expert than Michael Anane.

Which leaves me with just the philosophy behind this blog.  Does the sensationalism of the "biggest e-waste dump on earth" have a happy ending as a $30M investment goes into Ghana's Ewaste Moon Shot?  Or is this kind of economic exploitation going to result in the type of over-investment, government siphoning, etc. which typically bypass the poor pictured in poverty porn by "photojournalists" like Kevin McElvaney in the first place?

Who was really doing more for Africa, SGS or Joe Benson?  Read Adam Minter's excerpt from 2015, down to the final question.
Will the multi-million dollar investment "save Africa", or is it the ultimate Enviro-Exploitation... drum up an exaggeration so sensationalized that it borders on Hoax, collect millions of dollars in "certification" fees, and then over-construct a $30M facility which, by all accounts, is far more than the 27 young men - Awal, Razak, Rachid, Muhammed, and others - who we interviewed there, burning wires, and talking about their economic situation.

It's more than one million dollars for every young Dagomba wire burner we documented.  What benefits will they see?  Where exactly is the $30M going?

Am I being too negative?  Should this be portrayed as good news?  Or does the friendly fire, the collateral damage of environmental malpractice continue, to burn?

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