This is How to Do It Right
In the world of electronics it can be hard to find corporations truly working for positive change. That’s why it’s so important to recognize the companies who are really putting their efforts into finding and using better, more environmentally safe practices. The Institute of Scrap Recycling Industries does that every year, presenting its annual Design for Recycling Award to products meeting a series of stringent criteria.
To earn the Design for Recycling Award, a product must be designed (or re-designed) and manufactured in such a way that it:
Contains the most amount of recyclable materials possible;
Is easy to recycle using either newly developed or commonly used processes;
Can be recycled in a timely and cost-effective manner;
Makes use of enough recycled materials or components that it reduces the amount of raw materials in the production process; and
Reduces negative environmental impact while increasing overall product recyclability.
Past winners of the Design for Recycling Award include Dell Inc., The Herman Miller Company, Wind Simplicity and Hewlett Packard. Winning this prestigious award for 2015 is LG Electronics, Inc.
Innovative, proactive design
ISRI is recognizing LG Electronics for their 4K Ultra HD OLED and LED television sets. The new televisions demonstrate LG’s commitment to making sustainability a high priority in design and manufacture.
Both the 4K Ultra HD OLED and LED televisions feature display panels that are completely free of mercury. They include both recycled and recyclable plastics and avoid the use of PVC and brominated flame retardant plastics. The televisions are also notable for the ease with which they can be unsealed and disassembled for recycling, and for their minimal and lightweight packaging.
Our congratulations go out to the forward-thinking engineers and designers at LG Electronics! Even better, they’re not alone in their commitment to eco-friendly and recyclable design. Former Design for Recycling award-winner Dell, Inc. is continuing to raise the bar with new goals and new manufacturing priorities.
Making sustainability top priority
Dell, Inc. is out to prove that recycled plastics are a viable alternative to newly-manufactured plastics, and they seem to be succeeding. The past two years have seen Dell establish electronics take-back programs all over the world, and the company is now producing a number of products made partly of plastics reclaimed from recycled electronics.
Dell executives call this closed-loop recycling process “cost-neutral,” meaning that it’s no more expensive to use recycled plastics than it is to manufacture new plastics. As their use of reclaimed plastics increases, Dell predicts even lower costs along with significant reductions in carbon emissions during the manufacture process. Last year, Dell used just over 10 million pounds of reclaimed plastics in the manufacture of several laptops and tablets – but that’s just the beginning. By the year 2020, Dell plans to use 50 million pounds of recycled plastics in their production processes.
Thanks to innovative companies like LG Electronics and Dell, Inc., the future of electronics recycling is looking brighter. We hope other companies will take note: this is how to do it right.