Cambodia Prepared To Export “E-Waste” To Overseas Recycling Plants

More than 7 tonnes of potentially dangerous electronic trash, including batteries and accumulators, have been gathered by Ecobatt-Energy Cambodia over the course of the previous four years. These products cannot be recycled in the Kingdom due to a lack of infrastructure.

When Ecobatt-Energy was founded in 2019 with an emphasis on battery repair services, they also deployed battery bins in supermarkets throughout many towns and cities to start collecting electronic waste for export. This was done in coordination with the Ministry of Environment.

E-Waste Major Threat

“At the moment, there are more than 120 battery waste bins, more than 90 of which are owned by the environment ministry. The dumpsters are situated at Sihanoukville, Siem Reap, and Phnom Penh. More than seven tonnes of electronic garbage have been gathered. Since we lack the technology to recycle them ourselves, they have been sorted and kept for export,” Ecobatt sales manager Pen Channa told The Post.

The smaller batteries will be shipped to Spain, while the larger ones will go to South Korea. To accept other electronic debris, we are seeking partners, he further stated. If not properly stored, the trash poses a major threat to the environment, public health, and biodiversity of the Kingdom.

Lead and acid residue is present in many batteries, for instance. He cautioned that if the batteries are sold, the lead and resin will be extracted, but the remainder will be disposed of, allowing harmful substances to infiltrate the water system and harm Cambodia's biodiversity.

Neth Pheaktra, the ministry's state secretary, claimed that battery waste is hazardous and must be collected with the help of partners. Before being introduced in the other two municipalities, the initial bins were placed in Phnom Penh.

Trash Disposed Of In Water

"In the past, people would discard batteries into the trash or the water, so we want to promote their collection. Both the general public's health and biodiversity are harmed by battery waste. For those who frequent the Tonle Sap Lake, the Mekong River, or the ocean, this is very serious, he continued.

They occasionally utilize batteries to illuminate their path. We'll check to be sure they haven't dumped the old batteries in the water when it comes time to replace them. He added, urging people to properly dispose of batteries. "If they dump them into the water and the batteries break down, the toxins in them would contaminate the water surrounding them," he said.

According to him, Cambodia produces more than 10,000 tonnes of rubbish every day, or close to 4 million tonnes annually. Ten to fifteen percent of it gets recycled, whereas only fifty to sixty percent of it is deposited in landfills. Approximately 60% to 65% of the waste we produce daily is organic, and only 20% is plastic. More than 10% of it is solid garbage, much of it electronic waste, he continued.

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