UNDP and Baidu Launched Green Alliance to Step up E-waste Recycling ServiceNov 4, 2015
4th November, Shanghai – United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) and Baidu launched today the ‘Baidu Recycle Green Service Alliance’ to support the app Baidu Recycle, an innovative smart phone light app that connects individuals disposing of electronic waste with dismantling and recycling companies. This new alliance, launched during the Urban Mining Expo which opened today in Shanghai, aims to scale up the Baidu Recycle by attracting key stakeholders in recycling and dismantling, as well as electronic manufacturers to build an internet-based nationwide e-waste management ecosystem.
According to a UN report, the final destination for around 70 percent of the world's annual 500 million tons of electronic waste, is China. A map published by the Solving the E-Waste Problem (StEP) Initiative estimates that the country will be grappling with over 65 million tonnes of e-waste by 2017.
In an attempt to tackle China’s e-waste recycling challenge, the alliance is comprised by leading electronic appliance manufacturers such as Intel, ROBAM Appliances, Midea, Joyoung, Changhong, Haier, Lenovo, dismantlers such as TCL-Aobo, and other stakeholders such as China Resource Recycling Association. Leveraging UN’s convening power and Baidu’s technological edge and user base, the alliance will integrate the comparative advantages of manufacturers, recyclers and dismantlers, thereby creating an internet-based incentive to encourage nationwide e-waste recycling through the formal channels. Due to lack of awareness, as well as a lack of access to formal recyclers, users, formerly, were more likely to choose the informal sector who dismantle appliances illegally, causing a hazardous impact on the environment.
The Baidu Recycle app was therefore designed to help users with a favorable pricing and recycle their electronic products by connecting them to certified waste recycling and dismantling agencies across all major cities in China. The app also seeks to effectively integrate the informal sector into the legitimate e-waste processing industry.
“The next step and biggest challenge is to make Baidu Recycle scalable, and accessible nationwide,” said Patrick Haverman, Deputy Country Director of UNDP China. “We want to encourage more recyclers and dismantlers to be part of the alliance, so that we can build up a nationwide network for the e-waste ecosystem. With the support of this alliance, Baidu Recycle could potentially revolutionize the whole industry.”
Tao Hailiang, Chief Engineer of the Big Data Department of Baidu, noted that “Baidu Recycle has created a platform connecting the submission, collection and treatment of e-waste. Furthermore the app has helped smooth the transition for users selling e-waste and buying new appliances. In doing this, we have provided users with safer, greener and quicker e-waste recycling solutions while delivering tangible benefits to consumers.”
Baidu Recycle is the first recycling solution put forward by UNDP-Baidu Big Data Joint Lab, with support from the Foreign Economic Cooperation Office under the Ministry of Environmental Protection of China. This September, the UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon and Robin Li, CEO of Baidu, witnessed the launch of Baidu Recycle 2.0, an upgraded version of Baidu Recycle.
Ms. Zhang Wei, Chief Communications Officer, UNDP China
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