Waste management is becoming a major global policy issue for several reasons including pollution control, the
increasing demand for the extraction of rare and finite natural resources required for consumer and industrial
product and the diminishing availability of landfill sites for disposal. Improper waste management and landfill use
have implications for policy development regarding environmental degradation and human health issues. Of particular note is the increasing production and consumption of consumer electronic products, such as laptops,
televisions and mobile phones, which are composed of rare and precious metals, other metals, plastics, minerals
and chemicals. Many of these substances are toxic when inadequately disposed of or dismantled and they pose
significant risks to human health and well-‐being as well as environmental damage through contamination of air,
soil and groundwater sources. In addition, the improper disposal of end-‐of-‐life electronics and their components represents a significant resource loss. Improperly managing electronic waste is a global as well as a Canadian issue. A worldwide phenomenon of exporting electronic waste (e-‐waste) from the developed to developing world, often illegally and without adequate regulation, has been recognized over the past couple
decades. The international community has stepped in to alleviate this ethical problem by prohibiting the export
of hazardous waste from OECD to non-‐OECD countries. However, this international action has done little to
encourage effective domestic waste management in Canada. Instead, provinces have taken initiatives at different levels, leading to misaligned policies at the national level. This purpose in this paper is to investigate
Canada’s initiatives in terms of e-‐waste management and whether a more domestically focused strategy
would be more effective in improving Canada’s landfill use, general waste management and environmental
performance, as well as further deterring the illegal export of e-‐waste.
Behrens, Annaliese. (2013). Electronic Waste Management in Canada ( Unpublished master's thesis). University of Calgary, Calgary, AB.