Lawmakers are pushing gadget manufacturers with the Right to Repair movement

January 17, 2019 by  
Filed under Eco, Green, Recycle

The amount of electronics that we are throwing away each year is growing at an exponential rate, and this toxic trash is hazardous to both people and the planet. What are we supposed to do when our smartphones or other gadgets stop working? According to lawmakers in the United States and Europe, there is one option that should be available instead of getting rid of them— fixing them. Lawmakers in at least 18 states— and the European Parliament— believe that manufacturers should make it a priority that their products last longer and are easier to fix, a movement known as “Right To Repair.” The 18 U.S. states include California, Washington, Massachusetts, Vermont, New York, Hawaii, Illinois, Iowa, Kansas, Minnesota, Missouri, North Carolina, Nebraska, New Hampshire, New Jersey, Oklahoma, Tennessee and Virginia. E-waste is the fastest-growing waste stream on Earth, says the Global E-Waste Monitor. In 2016, our planet generated 44.7 million metric tons of e-waste, and as more products continue to hit the market, the forecasts for future waste are projected to skyrocket. Experts say that by 2021, we are looking at 52.2 million metric tons of e-waste . As technology advances for electronics, DIY fixes for gadgets are a huge challenge for consumers, thus causing more and more consumers and politicians to demand a change to the  law . Related: Precycle, a zero-waste grocery store, opens in Brooklyn California Assemblywoman Susan Talamantes Eggman introduced the California Right To Repair Act last March, and her bill would require manufacturers to release diagnostic and repair instructions and make equipment or service parts available to small repair shops and product owners. “We should be working to reduce needless waste —repairing things that still have life—but companies use their power to make things harder to repair. Repair should be the easier, more affordable choice and it can be, but first, we need to fix our laws,” said Emily Rusch, executive director of CALPIRG, in a press release in support of Eggman’s bill. Environmentalists say the “Right to Repair” legislation would not only save resources, but will also reduce carbon emissions from the manufacturing of new products. While the act proves to be beneficial, it could, however, prove to be a considerable challenge to pass. Tech giants like Apple and Microsoft believe that users fixing their own devices could be a security risk to the user, not to mention, the fact that these companies would prefer that consumers continue to buy their new products. Via EcoWatch Image via Shutterstock

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Lawmakers are pushing gadget manufacturers with the Right to Repair movement

10 Things You Can Do Today for the Environment

October 22, 2018 by  
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The recent report from the United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on … The post 10 Things You Can Do Today for the Environment appeared first on Earth911.com.

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10 Things You Can Do Today for the Environment

Ricoh is determined in its zero-carbon vision

October 16, 2018 by  
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In Japan, the electronics brand stands out with its ambitious goal of eliminating greenhouse gas emissions.

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Ricoh is determined in its zero-carbon vision

How we can crash car culture

October 16, 2018 by  
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The best of live interviews from GreenBiz events. This episode: Transportation experts talk about how to decarbonize transportation, as emissions continue to grow.

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How we can crash car culture

Can we innovate our way out of this mess?

October 16, 2018 by  
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There’s power in asking such questions — and creating the conditions for them to be thoughtfully considered.

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Can we innovate our way out of this mess?

Recycling Mystery: Should You Refill or Recycle Ink Cartridges?

August 1, 2018 by  
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From an environmental standpoint, reusing a product is almost always … The post Recycling Mystery: Should You Refill or Recycle Ink Cartridges? appeared first on Earth911.com.

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Recycling Mystery: Should You Refill or Recycle Ink Cartridges?

Recycling Stealth Electronics

June 11, 2018 by  
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The word “electronics” brings computers, DVD players and TVs to … The post Recycling Stealth Electronics appeared first on Earth911.com.

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Recycling Stealth Electronics

How a technology invented for mining could play a role in e-waste processing

April 18, 2018 by  
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Canadian company EnviroLeach wants to make the process of “urban mining” less hazardous for humans and the environment.

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How a technology invented for mining could play a role in e-waste processing

Geologists discover bacteria that turns small bits of gold into solid nuggets

January 22, 2018 by  
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Geologists in Queensland, Australia have discovered a unique type of bacteria that forges small bits of gold into solid nuggets. The discovery could allow mining companies to reprocess previously undesirable gold into market-ready products, and transform the ways in which gold-containing electronics are disposed. “In electronic waste, there’s a lot of gold,” University of Adelaide associate professor Frank Reith told Australian Broadcasting Corporation (ABC) . “We need a technique without impact to health or community or environment to [recover] the noble metals that are in everyone’s smart phone or computer.” Current techniques to do so are not nearly as sustainable as they need to be, but that could change if the bacteria proves an effective scalable tool. In 2016, electronic waste, which includes disposed phones , computers, and televisions, contained $84 billion worth of recoverable materials, including $29 billion worth of gold. Reith and his team are collaborating with New Zealand -based Mint to craft a solution to this problem that utilizes the special gold-molding bacteria. “We’re working with electronic waste as a feedstock, and are piloting a process that uses microbes as a method of purifying precious metals from the mix of other metals that old circuit boards contain,” Mint chief strategy officer Dr Ollie Crush told ABC . Related: This jewelry is made with upcycled gold from Dell computers The bacteria works by filtering out other metals and piecing together gold nuggets, one grain at a time. The process of recycling gold could take between 17 and 58 years, which, in geological time, is no time at all. The process would need to be sped up considerably for it to be more widely applied throughout the world. However, the promise of capturing what otherwise would be lost wealth is enticing. “If you can make a recoverable resource from those parts, then you’re adding to the bottom line of any mine,” said Reith. Via ABC Images via Depositphotos and University of Adelaide

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Geologists discover bacteria that turns small bits of gold into solid nuggets

Predicting the Biggest Green Trend for 2018

December 29, 2017 by  
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Although Kermit the Frog once sang, “It’s not easy being … The post Predicting the Biggest Green Trend for 2018 appeared first on Earth911.com.

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Predicting the Biggest Green Trend for 2018

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