The used cars that Europe sends to Nigeria are filled with illegal, toxic e-waste


#1

Originally published at: https://boingboing.net/2018/04/23/purloined-printers.html


#2

A Prince in Nigeria owes me money.


#3

And it doesn’t have to be non-working to be e-waste. If you plug in that old CRT TV or monitor, it still WORKS, but It is still waste.


#4

We used to have one African descended member in our car club (in Finland). I don’t remember exactly where the guy came from but I vaguely remember that he was from Nigeria. He did buy several crappy barely running vans that he sent to his home country. Despite the vans being crappy they did drive most of the distance to “maybe-Nigeria”. But he wasn’t the only one here doing this. Certain van and car models are here very sought after by African descended immigrants living here.

But before the vans were sent to their long trip they packed them full of crappy electronics that they were sourcing from local recycling depots. They were discarded things so they got them for free. Some of the devices of course did work but most didn’t.

But this wasn’t e-waste for them. It was a treasure. Before the vans left Finland with a full load their rear doors were tab welded shut so that the treasure isn’t going to get robber during the trip. In certain places hit and run robbing while standing in traffic seems to be a problem.

Skilled guys could get some of the stuff fixed and I guess there is fairly good markets for them in their home countries. Of course the useless stuff are very likely to get processed or discarded in not very environmental friendly way.


#5

I’ve always thought that under-populated countries in Africa are vastly UNDER-polluted, their air quality is probably vastly inefficiently low compared to Los Angeles or Mexico City. Only the lamentable facts that so much pollution is generated by non-tradable industries (transport, electrical generation) and that the unit transport costs of solid waste are so high prevent world welfare enhancing trade in air pollution and waste.

Love, Larry


#6

As a matter of fact, we Europeans send a lot more toxic waste to Africa. We also send old stinky tankers under foreign flags, to be taken apart under horrifying conditions. In addition, we literally destroyed the African chicken trade by sending in all the parts we don’t eat.


#7

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