The West-African country of Ghana is one of two countries in the region with major inflow of imported electronic waste (e-waste) with Nigeria being the other one. According to estimates, up to 9 kg of e-waste per capita was imported to Ghana in 2009, piling up to 215,000 tons in total. The Agbogbloshie scrapyard of e-waste and car wrecks, located directly within the urban area of the capital city of Accra, became known all over the globe as a toxic hot spot due to vast contamination of the site with heavy metals and persistent organic pollutants (POPs), such as dioxins or brominated flame retardants. There are many more waste management related problems in Ghana causing serious toxic pollution. In several cities, not very well equiped hospital medical waste incinerators are in operation, potentially harming the environment.
Thanks to the support of the Swedish government and through the cross-boarder partnership with the IPEN network, Arnika cooperates with Ghanaian scientists on sampling of several hot spots in order to find out levels of potential contamination of food chain by POPs.