(FILES) A picture taken on October 16, 2

An electronic waste collection and awareness initiative has been launched in Benin, courtesy of Ericsson and MTN Benin.

Ericsson’s Ecology Management and Product Take-Back program takes responsibility for the e-waste problem that has reached 48.9 million tonnes in 2012 and is expected to increase 33% by 2017. The firms have set up a collection depot with a 20-foot container at Stade de l’Amitié de Kouhounou, Cotonou, Benin.

As part of its program, Ericssion and MTN will work with customers and the public to enlighten on e-waste collection that will be transported to an Ericsson approved recycling partner in Durban, South Africa.

Fredrik Jejdling, Head of Region sub-Saharan Africa, Ericsson, “ We have been partnering with our customers across the region on e-waste take back and this partnership with MTN in Benin extends the scope of this initiative to include creating awareness about e-waste and helping to ensure that end-of-life material is waste-treated in an environmentally responsible manner.”

According to the Guardian, “The global volume of electronic waste is expected to grow by 33% in the next four years and in 2012 alone, nearly 50m tonnes of e-waste were generated worldwide and most of these composed of toxic substances such as lead, mercury, cadmium, arsenic and flame retardants from old mobile phones, CRT computer screens among others, toxic materials also enter the atmosphere and affect the air quality, and contaminate land and water causing a series of illness globally.”

This deal is intended to address the risks associated with e-waste – such as improper handling and treatment, transport, emissions to the environment and risk to human health.

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