August 8/9th, 2018. Seattle, WA. The global waste watchdog group Basel Action Network (BAN) released its findings today of a year-long United Nations funded study that used GPS trackers hidden inside of 35 old computers, printers, and monitors. They found that two of the devices left at the consumer take-back desk at Officeworks were exported to developing countries in Asia in likely contravention of international law.
The BAN study entitled "Illegal Export of e-Waste from Australia: a story as told by GPS trackers" described how BAN, mimicking the actions of Australian consumers, delivered the used computing equipment to official government-sanctioned consumer drop-off locations in Adelaide, Brisbane, Perth, and Sydney and then monitored the signals sent by the devices over the course of a year.
- ABC - E-waste exports highlight need for tighter controls on 'unethical and irresponsible' trade
- The Guardian - E-waste from drop-offs at Officeworks exported, possibly breaching treaty
- e-Scrap News - BAN releases results of Australian tracking project
- CRN Australia - E-waste from Officeworks drop-off points allegedly exported to Hong Kong and Thailand