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Equipment Dismantling and Refurbishment

Generally speaking, equipment dismantling and refurbishment activities,pose little or no threat to human health or the environment when they are carried out properly, taking into account all human health and environmental requirements. PCs and other ICT equipment do contain minimal amounts of potentially harmful substances (e.g. lead, cadmium, beryllium),but they are in solid, non-dispersible forms, and thus pose no concern for human exposure or environmental release in ordinary use or handling of whole equipment. Activities relating to handling, including manual disassembly and most repair, refurbishment or upgrade activity can thus often be safely undertaken by workers in developing countries, provided they are carefully monitored and safeguards are in place.

However, currently in most developing countries such activities are carried out by the informal sector without regard to safety and environmental concerns. Therefore,there is an urgent need to improve existing conditions before imports of WEEE to these countries are initiated.