The photos capture a lot like things I have seen. You have to spend some time, let your eyes adjust. You begin to recognize that two photos are embarrassing messes, and two photos show bootstrapping techies creating wealth they can be proud of. Yes, proud, even though they are poor.
This text too looks at first glance like another anti-export diatribe. But read it closely. The author, Sriram Sharma, gets to know Harshit Patel of the Indian place "Techshop", an e-commerce website that resells computer hardware. The Indian company has an e-cycle takeback program, similar to our "cash for clunkers" project with Retroworks de Mexico.
What's not so great about the article is the repeated anecdote substituted for data
Ok, great, I thought it was 80%, or 75%, or "fifty-fifty", or 15% bad, or 30% bad... all stats I've profiled on this blog from different sources. I think "e-waste" represents the most journalism ever posted about the least amount of scientific data. Ok, now it's 90% bad, (the source - SVTC) but the author is also talking to an Indian technician who does this and clearly he has a brain and experience, but fails to ask him his own opinion.
When I talk to techies overseas, they tell me the crap they get is domestic. Sometimes it was western reuse by origin, but it wore out years ago and was returned. If you gauge their enthusiasm, they want the stuff from wealthy countries - that's where (as Ms Fang said) "the candy is".
Harshit is the kid in class, if you were a Peace Corps teacher like me, you'd be really excited to follow in his later years. He is totally able to do this, like the women in Mexico or our contract manufacturing partners. The environmental savings are much greater than recycling in the USA. Every time he fixes something that was "good enough" for someone to get online, but which did not require new manufacturing, he scores mega sustainability points. From the article:
Graveyards, yes, but hospitals too. You don't close the hospital when you find dead people there.