For every E-waste Compensated gadget made, e-waste will be recycled
Our love of gadgets and technology is leading to a huge electronic waste problem. TCO Development, the folks behind the global sustainability certification, has announced a new initiative to help with our growing e-waste problem.
According to the United Nations University's E-waste Monitor effort, around 50 million tonnes of electronic waste is produced every year, and though there have been a number of projects over the years looking to put a dent in that figure – including a microfactory designed to re-use e-waste materials, reclaiming precious metals from ground up, frozen nanodust, and even making Olympic medals from discarded gadgetry – it's set to double by 2050.
You may have already seen laptops, tablets, smartphones, projectors and so on carrying a TCO Certified label. This means that such products must meet comprehensive environmental and social criteria throughout their life cycle, such as energy efficiency, recycled material content, ergonomic design and limited hazardous substance content.
Now the organization behind this globally-recognized certification program has added a new criterion to its TCO Certified Edge certification called E-waste Compensated. This will essentially ensure that for each certified smartphone, tablet or notebook manufactured, an equivalent amount of e-waste is collected in a country that lacks safe recycling facilities. The collected e-waste is then transported to a recycling plant that meets strict environmental criteria.
"E-waste is often seen as a problem, but it also represents opportunities for green procurement," said Joost de Kluijver, founder of Closing the Loop – which collects end-of-life phones, tablets and laptops for recycling, and is the new framework's first approved collector. "Shifting e-waste to where it can be recycled in a responsible manner, can give those valuable resources a second life, keeping them in the loop of the circular economy."
Source: TCO Development