CORDIS - EU research results

EWIT: Developing an e-waste implementation toolkit to support the recycling and the secondary raw material recovery strategies in metropolitan areas in Africa

Periodic Reporting for period 2 - EWIT (EWIT: Developing an e-waste implementation toolkit to support the recycling and the secondary raw material recovery strategies in metropolitan areas in Africa)

Reporting period: 2016-08-01 to 2017-01-31

Raw materials’ supply is an increasing concern on global scale. EWIT project has been developed in the context of EIP RM, an EC initiative. It is conceived as a Europe-Africa cooperation aimed to implement a toolkit bringing best practices and successful case-studies together in the field of e-waste management for Africa and Europe. An environmentally sound management of e-waste will ensure a greater protection of human health and environment, as well as the recovery of secondary raw materials.
Vienna (Austria) and Choma (Zambia), Oporto (Portugal) and Kisii (Kenya), Florence (Italy) and Johannesburg (South Africa), Antwerp (Belgium) and Abidjan (Ivory Coast) are the targeted twinned areas the project is based on. At first, e-waste data are collected and analyzed over 4 themess: collection, processing technology, legislation and financing, and circular economy. Solutions to common problems were then discussed. A toolkit takes the form of a dynamic and easy-to-use information and service portal that would serve policy makers to get guidance and practical support for the design and development of smart e-waste collection and recycling systems.
The EWIT project has the following main goals:
1) Short term goals: A mapping of the requirements of African areas, on to e-waste; The most relevant experiences, best practices, processes and tools available; the e-waste toolkit
2) Long term goals: Increase environment and health protection; Keep current jobs, improve their effectiveness and working conditions; Maximize recycling opportunities to generate economic value and new jobs; Establish a platform to generate synergies between Africa and Europe on e-waste; Collect data on waste and recovery potential; Implement effective waste recycling systems; Develop standards, benchmarks and best practice on recycling across Africa.

The short- and long- term goals translate in the official goals for the EWIT project:
- Objective a) To develop a comprehensive mapping of the baseline data and capacity of African metropolitan areas related to e-waste management.
- Objective b) To collect and analyse the most relevant experiences, best practices, processes and legal tools representing the whole value chain, provided by key stakeholders from both Europe and Africa.
- Objective c) To develop a dynamic and easy to use information and service portal (the “E-waste implementation Toolkit”) that will offer guidance and practical support for the design and development of smart e-waste collection and recycling systems.
The “Twin Cities Workshops” were completed (an African city and its partnering “twin” European city met, to collect information and share experiences). They were held in all the twin cities (WP1).
Goal of the TCWs: to frame the baseline scenarios in the African target areas on local e-waste management systems, suggesting potential solutions detailed by a group of experts. Main output: Master Plans for the African cities, where local issues and potential solutions were identified together with short, medium and long-term goals for the municipality.Then‘Action plans’ for the target African areas, whith specific goals and detailed relevant actions.
The experts evaluated the information against the 4 themes, during the Expert Modelling Workshops, held in Johannesburg, Vienna, Rome (Italy), and a final “Plenary Session” in Vienna (Austria) (WP2).
Thanks to the applied methodology, ‘typical scenarios’ were identified and shared via the toolkit, intended to became reference examples.
The EWIT portal and the toolkit were progressively fed by the information collected. Data were structured within a tool called the ‘Knowledge Base’. A “Wizard”, then, brings the user across a self-evaluation test of the context of reference, giving preliminary information on potential solutions to improve the e-waste management system (WP3).
Dissemination and divulgation activities as the promotion of the results of the EWIT project were done in the (WP4). Conferences in the target areas helped sharing the main EWIT outputs and presenting the portal functionalities.
The Project Management structure described in the Grant Agreement. The Advisory Committee – the steering committee of the project –, was established at a meeting in Addis Ababa (Ethiopia) on April 2015, at the African Union Commission’s premises.
Communication with the Advisory Committee occurs on a regular basis. The Advisory Committee also gathered for a second meeting online. Another meeting is expected on next September 2016.
Periodic “Project Board Meetings” have been held on a regular basis, as well, (online, via the GoToMeeting conferencing system), along with meetings on specific topics, face to face and online.
Also a meeting involving the EWIT Consortium has been arranged online, via the GoToMeeting platform.
Agendas, supporting documentation and Minutes are available for each of these meetings, through the shared file system (EWIT project Dropbox folder).
Planning activities are ongoing for the second reporting period of the project. (Activities of WP5).

Main outcomes. The TCWs and EMWs represented the ground for deep discussions on several aspects of e-waste management. The most recurrent issues and those deserving a special focus were various:
- The acknowledgement of the informal sector as a relevant system which should be integrated as much as possible in any potential new ‘formalized’ system;
- The exigence of including programs of training and education on the health and environmental issues implied in e-waste management. This awareness campaigns should be targeted both to the e-waste sector employees and the vast public. Equally, also institutions should be educated on the importance of setting a sound system of waste management.
- Discussions on how to financially support the development of an e-waste system bring about a deeper reflection on the concept of EPR, its different applications and the role stakeholders like local authorities and producers can have in contributing to the system.
- The need of setting a EEE and WEEE data management system was widely recognized as a fundamental step enabling the concerned partners to make long-terms considerations on the development of an e-waste management system.
- Legislative-related matters were also under the lens of the EWIT analysis. Particularly, e-waste specific law implementation and enforcement steps were discussed.
1. The network of stakeholders involved in the project increased as well as the members of the Advisory Committee, from 9 to 14 institutions overall.
2. Dissemination conferences were held in the target cities of Kisii and Choma, integrated with additional conferences. In Kenya a conference took place in Nairobi. In Zambia a conference was held in Livingstone. Additional international entities from several African Countries were involved to ensure a major catchment area.
3. The informal sector in the African target cities has shown a deep capacity of e-waste management as well as an employment capacity beyond the expectations. For these reasons, one of the main goal of the cities’ Action Plans is currently to ‘upgrade’ the already existent informal sector despite limiting to formalise a new system.
4. In Africa the ‘reuse’ sector has shown to be much more developed than what it’s actually in Europe. This has revealed to be a hint for further reflections from the European side to tailor a best fit solution.
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