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Dumping Toxic Waste Abroad

Environmental issues cover a wide range of areas. One important issue is the dumping of toxic waste in poor countries that do not have the proper resources to prevent this from happening. The heavy metals from the waste don’t go away, and they contaminate water, soil, oceans, people and animals.

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Dumping Electronic Waste Abroad

Comprehension

  1. Who uncovered the story of the illegal dumping of electronic waste?
  2. Which countries export illegal trash?
  3. What are the problems connected to this waste?
  4. Which other countries have been used as illegal dumping grounds?
  5. Why is the problem of e-waste also a problem for generations to come?
  6. How would you describe the workers?
  7. What are the "workers" looking for in the trash?
  8. How is the trash concealed when shipped abroad?
  9. What kind pf products are exported in this manner?
  10. What does it mean that some of the trash is marked with EPA? (Use the Internet to find out what this abbreviation stands for.)
  11. Do you know any of the brands mentioned in this report?
  12. What does Greenpeace mean by demanding a life cycle responsibility?
Suggested Solution
  1. Greenpeace
  2. The USA and Europe
  3. It contains hazardous chemicals, such as heavy metals.
  4. China, India, Nigeria
  5. It contaminates the ground and the people and stays in the environment for generations.
  6. --
  7. Metals which can be sold.
  8. It is shipped as second-hand goods.
  9. Electronic goods - computers, monitors,TVs, etc.
  10. It means that it is approved and safe.
  11. --
  12. Companies must take responsibility for their products from production through disposal.

Vocabulary

Try the interactive task in the link collection. Match the word with the correct definition.

Discussion

  1. How can we as consumers contribute to reducing this problem?
  2. What can the international community do? In your opinion which international organisations should lead the way?
  3. What characterizes the countries where toxic e-waste is dumped?
  4. Why do you think Ghana and other countries are not able to do anything about this problem?
  5. How do you explain that EPA marked trash may end up in Ghana?

Writing

  1. Write a Letter to the Editor in which you call for action to be taken against the illegal dumping in Ghana. (Suggested length 300 – 500 words)
  2. Write a newspaper article in which you use the information from the video clip.
    (Suggested length 300 – 500 words)
  3. You work for Greenpeace and are trying to uncover illegal dumping of waste. Write a letter to an exporter of waste in which you offer sites and “workers” to get rid of his dump illegally. Use your imagination to make up the details.

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