Background and objectives: When electrical and electronic equipment reaches its end of life, it becomes ‘Waste Electrical and Electronic Equipment’ (WEEE). The growing amount of this type of waste has posed significant challenges to waste management, since WEEE contains a whole range of toxic chemicals having relevant environmental and health implications. The WEEE life cycle may expose the general population and workers to various toxic chemicals, such as heavy metals. We conducted a health risk assessment to evaluate the cancer risk derived from environmental and occupational exposure to trace elements from different recycling procedures (electronic scrap in blister copper, treatment of metals recovery in copper smelter, treatment of shredding, pyrometallurgical treatment of Li-ion battery). We considered the typical production of WEEE in a municipality of 150.0000 inhabitants, where a Life Cycle assessment (LCA) was carried out. Methods: Outdoor (1km2 around a WEEE treatment plant) and indoor (factory volume of 3200m3) emissions generated from the above-mentioned procedures were computed, to perform a health risk assessment for occupationally-exposed workers and for the general population around the plant. Dose of the heavy metals cadmium, nickel, arsenic inhaled by the potentially exposed population was estimated using the values obtained through a toxicological model. Cancer risk due to inhalation was calculated using the method proposed by the California Office of Environmental Health and Hazard Assessment. Results and Conclusions: For the heavy metals considered, generated from WEEE treatment, these preliminary results show negligible cancer risk for the general population. On the converse, some risks may be present for occupational exposures linked to specific procedures (from cancer risk of 1,42x10-3 for men working in shredding procedure and exposed to nickel to cancer risk of 4,68x10- 4 for women working with electronic scrap and exposed to arsenic).

CANCER RISK FROM HEAVY METAL EXPOSURE IN RECYCLING WASTE OF ELECTRICAL AND ELECTRONIC EQUIPMENT: PRELIMINARY RESULTS FROM THE WEEENMODELS EUROPEAN LIFE PROGRAM / Violi, Federica; Modenese, Alberto; Gobba, Fabriziomaria; Ferrari, Anna Maria; Rimini, Bianca; Gamberini, Rita; Pini, Martina; Neri, Paolo; Filippini, Tommaso; Grasselli, Luigi; Montanari, Pinuccia; Vinceti, Marco. - STAMPA. - (2016). ((Intervento presentato al convegno 6th International Symposium Federation of European Societies on Trace Elements and Minerals tenutosi a Catania nel 26-28 May, 2016.

CANCER RISK FROM HEAVY METAL EXPOSURE IN RECYCLING WASTE OF ELECTRICAL AND ELECTRONIC EQUIPMENT: PRELIMINARY RESULTS FROM THE WEEENMODELS EUROPEAN LIFE PROGRAM

Violi, Federica;MODENESE, ALBERTO;GOBBA, Fabriziomaria;FERRARI, Anna Maria;RIMINI, Bianca;GAMBERINI, Rita;PINI, MARTINA;FILIPPINI, TOMMASO;GRASSELLI, Luigi;VINCETI, Marco
2016

Abstract

Background and objectives: When electrical and electronic equipment reaches its end of life, it becomes ‘Waste Electrical and Electronic Equipment’ (WEEE). The growing amount of this type of waste has posed significant challenges to waste management, since WEEE contains a whole range of toxic chemicals having relevant environmental and health implications. The WEEE life cycle may expose the general population and workers to various toxic chemicals, such as heavy metals. We conducted a health risk assessment to evaluate the cancer risk derived from environmental and occupational exposure to trace elements from different recycling procedures (electronic scrap in blister copper, treatment of metals recovery in copper smelter, treatment of shredding, pyrometallurgical treatment of Li-ion battery). We considered the typical production of WEEE in a municipality of 150.0000 inhabitants, where a Life Cycle assessment (LCA) was carried out. Methods: Outdoor (1km2 around a WEEE treatment plant) and indoor (factory volume of 3200m3) emissions generated from the above-mentioned procedures were computed, to perform a health risk assessment for occupationally-exposed workers and for the general population around the plant. Dose of the heavy metals cadmium, nickel, arsenic inhaled by the potentially exposed population was estimated using the values obtained through a toxicological model. Cancer risk due to inhalation was calculated using the method proposed by the California Office of Environmental Health and Hazard Assessment. Results and Conclusions: For the heavy metals considered, generated from WEEE treatment, these preliminary results show negligible cancer risk for the general population. On the converse, some risks may be present for occupational exposures linked to specific procedures (from cancer risk of 1,42x10-3 for men working in shredding procedure and exposed to nickel to cancer risk of 4,68x10- 4 for women working with electronic scrap and exposed to arsenic).
6th International Symposium Federation of European Societies on Trace Elements and Minerals
Catania
26-28 May, 2016
Violi, Federica; Modenese, Alberto; Gobba, Fabriziomaria; Ferrari, Anna Maria; Rimini, Bianca; Gamberini, Rita; Pini, Martina; Neri, Paolo; Filippini, Tommaso; Grasselli, Luigi; Montanari, Pinuccia; Vinceti, Marco
CANCER RISK FROM HEAVY METAL EXPOSURE IN RECYCLING WASTE OF ELECTRICAL AND ELECTRONIC EQUIPMENT: PRELIMINARY RESULTS FROM THE WEEENMODELS EUROPEAN LIFE PROGRAM / Violi, Federica; Modenese, Alberto; Gobba, Fabriziomaria; Ferrari, Anna Maria; Rimini, Bianca; Gamberini, Rita; Pini, Martina; Neri, Paolo; Filippini, Tommaso; Grasselli, Luigi; Montanari, Pinuccia; Vinceti, Marco. - STAMPA. - (2016). ((Intervento presentato al convegno 6th International Symposium Federation of European Societies on Trace Elements and Minerals tenutosi a Catania nel 26-28 May, 2016.
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