News - Oct 18, 2022 Samoa Plans Implementation Actions on E-waste Management Project
E-WASTE generation is an issue in the Pacific and Samoa. It is driven by ambitious economic developments, the diversified nature of products, and the rapid pace of technological change in our lifestyles. A study conducted in 2013 under the initial PacWaste Project determined that the most significant generators of e-waste in the country are largely institutional; being both commercial and government, however, domestic generation is rapidly increasing at an alarming rate.
E-waste contains hazardous constituents that have proven to negatively impacted the environment and affect critically human health if not properly informed and managed as is the case in our small island country which lacked awareness and adequate infrastructure to properly manage hazardous wastes safely.
Samoa faces huge challenges in the management of E-wastes which is either internally generated or imported as ‘new’ and ‘second hand’ and fabricated products. Some challenges include the lack of distinction between used electrical and electronic equipment and electronic wastes, the non-environmentally sound management of e-wastes such as the crude recovery of valuable components, and the lack of effective take-back and Extended Producer Responsibility programs for end-of-life of electrical and electronic products.
Additionally, the absence of national infrastructure, technology, and proper disposal facilities for e-wastes disposals and insufficient awareness and public education on the problems associated with the importation of near-end-of-life electrical and electronic devices pose grave problems for our people.
In late August the Samoa Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment (MNRE) convened a project inception meeting inviting key waste management stakeholders in the country to inform them of coordinated project actions that were being planned for implementation by MNRE to provide sustainable solutions for e-waste management supported by the PacWastePlus investments in Samoa.
Invited stakeholders were informed that the PacWastePlus project is designed to improve the management of e-waste which included the collection, safe dismantling, export, and recycling of end-of-life electronic products.
With the Waste Management Act 2010 in place, there are clear provisions that allow the development of relevant regulations, policies, and guideline frameworks to regulate the importation of electrical and electronic products and to guide the sustainable management of e-waste at the national level. The endorsed National Waste Management Strategy 2019-2023 serves as a guide in the proper management of waste to achieve the vision of a “clean and healthy” Samoa.
MNRE representatives reaffirmed their commitment to progress project implementation actions and, to strengthen ongoing and existing initiatives to improve waste management in Samoa, not only on e-waste but for other waste streams with limited disposing and handling mechanisms.
Samoa Project Inception Meeting Photos