Stockholm Convention funded "Preliminary Assessment of new Pop's Pentabde, Octabde and Hbb Entering Africa Via used electronics/e-Waste; Development Of Methodology for sampling and Analysis Of Pbdes in e-Waste"
In May 2009 certain congeners contained in commercial Pentabromodiphenyl ether (c-PentaBDE) and commercial Octabromodiphenyl ether (c-OctaBDE)1 were listed in Annex A of the Stockholm Convention (POP-PBDEs) which prohibits production, use, import, and export. As there is no longer any known production the main challenge is the identification and treatment of existing stockpiles and wastes containing POP-PBDEs.
Article 6 of the Stockholm Convention requires each Party to develop and implement strategies to identify existing POPs stockpiles, and to develop strategies for identifying products in use that contain or are contaminated with POPs and POPs-containing wastes. The listing of POPPBDEs includes a specific exemption allowing for recycling of articles that contain these substances and the use and final disposal of articles manufactured from recycled materials that contain or may contain these substances. The contamination of a wide range of product streams is now a practical and policy challenge that is likely to be exacerbated by recycling. Recent studies have revealed that plastic from waste electrical and electronic equipment (WEEE) containing PBDE is largely uncontrolled and is found in many recycled products (children's toys, household goods, video tape casings and electronics). Therefore the flow and the recycling flow of POPPBDEs containing plastic-for-recycling from WEEE need to be understood and controlled.There are only a few data of POP-PBDE levels in WEEE plastic and these are measured in mainly WEEE plastic in Europe (Waeger et al. 2010). No studies on POP-PBDEs in WEEE present in developing countries or imported to developing countries via WEEE or used EEE have been performed or published.
While up to 2006 the largest amount of e-waste from the US and Europe was exported to China,the global e-waste flow has shifted since that time and also countries in Africa including Nigeria have become e-waste importers with associated pollution from recycling (Basel Convention Secretariat 2012, Ogungbuyi et al 2012, Pucket etal. 2005). Plastic from EEE/WEEE (in particular Cathode Ray Tube (CRT) casings from TVs and PCs) is considered to contain the largest share of POP-PBDE in the waste and recycling stream followed by polyurethane foam in vehicles (cars, buses, train etc.) and furniture and possibly construction (Stockholm Convention POP-PBDE Inventory Guidance). Furthermore plastic is recycled already in Nigeria while the country is also currently planning to develop more than 20 plastic recycling facilities.
Considering the implementation of the Stockholm Convention in Nigeria (and other African countries), the extent of new POPs in plastic flow is important to monitor and to control.Arising from its experience in implementing the EWaste Africa project, BCCC-Africa submitted a proposal for funding to the Secretariat of Stockholm Convention on "Preliminary Assessment of New POPs PentaBDE, OctaBDE and HBB Entering Africa via Used Electronics/E-Waste;Development Of Methodology For Sampling And Analysis OfPBDESIn E-Waste" The proposal was approved and funded with a research grant to BCCC-Africa. The project exemplifies synergy between the Basel and Stockholm conventions. The project started in May 2011 and ended in September 2012.