Standards Australia has announced a new standard for electronic waste to help divert e-waste from landfill.
AS/NZS 5377:2013 Collection, storage, transport and treatment of end-of-life electrical and electronic equipment will outline minimum requirements for the safe and environmentally sound handling of e-waste. It sets out principles and minimum requirements for end-of-life electrical equipment in order to maximise reuse, reduce the amount of waste going to landfill, safeguard worker health and minimise environmental harm.
“The standard states that a lack of full scientific certainty should not be used as a reason for postponing measures to prevent environmental degradation or adverse health and safety effects. The standard sends a strong message regarding the environmental concerns of e-waste,” states Colin Blair, chief executive officer of Standards Australia.
Blair notes that the standard recognises that there are laws in place regulating how to comply with occupational health and safety requirements and environmental performance, and that Australia and New Zealand are signatories to international agreements on environmentally sound management of hazardous wastes and pollutants. “The standard enhances existing environmental protections and international obligations, while establishing the processes required to reduce the amount of waste going to landfill,” he explains.