Environmental and Health Effects: Exposure to E-waste Pollution

  • Muhammad Usman Khan
  • Athanasios Besis
  • Riffat Naseem Malik
Part of the Soil Biology book series (SOILBIOL, volume 57)


E-waste is a growing and emerging global problem because plethora of toxic chemicals are released to the environment during dismantling, burning, and recycling processes. Therefore, for this purpose, the current chapter aims to investigate with special emphasis on e-waste associated impacts on the environmental and human health. Informal e-waste activities with no safety measures exist in the developing countries like China, India, Ghana, Vietnam, Pakistan, etc. The major e-waste producer like USA and Europe have been increased the e-waste transportation into the developing countries for further processing. Besides that, large quantities of e-waste are also produced and received by China. Toxic chemicals, viz., PBDEs, DPs, PCDD/Fs, PAHs, PCBs, and heavy metals are reported to be prevalent in the e-waste sites at environmental compartments (air, soil/dust, drinking water) and human samples (placenta, umbilical cords, blood, hair, urine, and other tissues). Most of the studies showed that an elevated hazardous effect of e-waste-derived toxic chemicals on human population (children, adults, male, and female) are mainly prevailed at e-waste exposure sites as compared to the non-e-waste exposure or reference sites. The current chapter overview suggests improving: novel dismantling and remediation technologies; illegal transportation; lack of proper stringent policies and regulations for its safety measures and implementation; and there is also need of awareness regarding the toxic chemicals in e-waste and its exposure with ill-health impacts on human.


Environmental Health effects Exposure E-waste Pollution 


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Copyright information

© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Muhammad Usman Khan
    • 1
    • 2
  • Athanasios Besis
    • 3
  • Riffat Naseem Malik
    • 4
  1. 1.Department of Botanical and Environmental Sciences, Faculty of Biological SciencesKohat University of Science & TechnologyKohatPakistan
  2. 2.Department of Marine Sciences and Convergence EngineeringHanyang UniversityAnsanRepublic of Korea
  3. 3.Department of Chemistry, Environmental Pollution Control LaboratoryAristotle University of ThessalonikiThessalonikiGreece
  4. 4.Department of Environmental Sciences, Ecotoxicology and Environmental Biology Laboratory, Faculty of Biological SciencesQuaid I Azam UniversityIslamabadPakistan

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