Use waste as a resource, Incorporate digital technology, Collaborate to create joint value
11Make cities and human settlements inclusive, safe, resilient and sustainable
12Ensure sustainable consumption and production patterns
13Take urgent action to combat climate change and its impacts
E-waste management in Kenya represents a significant challenge: half of the estimated 51,000 tonnes of electronic waste produced in Kenya in 2019 was not disposed of appropriately. Much e-waste contains harmful materials which are detrimental to the environment and human health when not properly disposed of. Many of the discarded devices can be repaired and reused, giving mobile connectivity access to someone who may not otherwise be able to afford it.
For equipment that cannot be repaired, precious metals and recyclable materials can be extracted, and their material value recovered.
Waste Electrical and Electronic Equipment Centre (WEEE Centre) was originally set up to manage the proper disposal of waste IT materials generated from its mother company Computers for Schools Kenya (CFSK). CFSK was established in 2002 to advance information technology learning in schools by distributing computers and educating students and teachers. When computers needed to be disposed of CFSK accepted its responsibility, leading to the setting up of WEEE Centre in 2012.
WEEE Centre is a recycler that processes all types of electrical and electronic waste for a safer environment and improved human health. As well as serving their mother company, they collect or receive e-waste from at least 8,000 clients, including learning institutions, embassies, corporate clients and residential customers. All products received are dismantled and treated differently; each fraction has its own processing line. Products are either recycled locally or exported for recycling where facilities are not yet present in Kenya. Electronic waste can be repaired, upcycled, recycled or have its remaining value extracted. Certain repaired products are sold to second-hand electronics dealers. WEEE Centre is also committed to building awareness on e-waste. The company hosts community sessions in their offices and has collaborated with commercial partners, such as Safaricom, to set up over 100 collection points. Beyond Kenya, they are part of a growing continental network with partners in 15 African countries who do similar work, and to whom they provide training and support. WEEE Centre is ISO 9001:2015 and 14001:2015 certified.