Printed Circuit Boards (PCBs) are an integral part of any electronic equipment. The growth of e-waste as end-of-life electronic equipments at an exponential rate is producing large quantities of discarded PCBs. In India, current recycling and processing of PCBs is managed almost entirely by the informal sector or the unskilled labor (95%). The crude recycling activities cause irreversible health and environmental hazards and the loss of valuable materials due to the poor recovery of base and precious metals. With the disclosures of the recycling being done by unskilled labor, alternative recycling strategies are being sought with the aim of higher recovery of materials in an environment friendly manner. There is an urgent need to establish effective and efficient methods for recycling the metals presented in the waste PCBs. In this study, the existing methods practiced for recycling of waste PCBs in India and the management strategies for handling them are assessed.
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