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Old Cell Phones Danger Highlighted in Philippines

The danger of used cell phones and other forms of electronic waste has been highlighted by a coalition of environmental groups at a forum in Manila in the Philippines.  The forum, which was staged on Thursday in Quezon City, saw the executive director of Ban Toxics, Richard Gutierrez, play film recordings that showed junkyard and waste pickers being exposed to dangerously high levels of toxic waste on a daily basis.  Another part of the presentation also highlighted how the Philippines seems to be becoming the dumping ground of choice for old cell phones and many other forms of electrical waste from countries such as Japan and South Korea.
Gutierrez has called for local government units (referred to as LGUs) as well as the national government to step up and begin ensuring that used cell phones and all other forms of discarded electronic material are disposed of in a safer and more environmentally sound manner.  Ban Toxics has also called on the general public in the Philippines to make an effort to learn more about the best and greenest way to dispose of their old electrical goods just by using simple research techniques on the internet, as well as to try and buy only electronic goods carrying the “RoHS” label, which means that they abide by the European Union’s Restriction of Hazardous Substances directive.
“The message we are trying to convey is simple,” Gutierrez says.  “The solution to the waste problem is in our hands.”