The world is developing at an extremely high rate, and the need for resources is taking its toll on our environment. The way we currently live will not be sustainable in the future. We need to consider new ways we can behave to reduce the impact we are having on the environment. We need to change the model we use with regards to using the Earth’s resources and work towards a circular economy.
What is a linear economy?
This is the current model we are using. It is based on a ‘take-make-waste’ approach. Raw materials are extracted from the Earth to manufacture products, and once used, these are thrown to waste. It is estimated that 99% of things that people buy are disposed of within 6 months of purchasing it, without the materials being recovered or reused . This is an incredibly wasteful way to live. If we continue living by this linear economy, the world will not be able to sustain itself.
What is a recycling economy?
This is the next step up from a linear economy. The idea behind a recycling economy is that materials that otherwise would have gone to landfill will be recovered. This extends the lifespan of the materials until they ultimately go to waste. This does not require the consumer to change the way they buy products. Instead it relies on manufacturers and waste management organisations to change how they work. For example, they should look at manufacturing products out of the same type of recyclable plastic to reduce having to separate them at the recycling stage. The process of recycling, however, still uses lots of energy.
What is a circular economy?
A circular economy builds upon the recycling economy, by changing not only the way manufacturers work, but also by changing human behaviour with regards to consumption. The aim is to close the loop completely. By designing products and processes to allow the lifespan of the product to be extended, we can change people’s opinions towards reusing products. Retaining the functional value of the product by repairing or refurbishing it, means it can be resold and reused. As a result, this reduces the amount of waste going to landfill, and reduces the carbon emissions produced by extracting raw materials to produce new products.
What can I do to contribute to a circular economy?
1 – Reuse your goods
Rather than buying new, reuse your goods until they can no longer be used. Extending the life of your device means you are helping to reduce the number of new products being manufactured. In turn, this reduces the amount of carbon emissions. Changing our buying and consumption behaviours will be the factors that help towards a circular economy.
2 – Sell us your old or redundant IT equipment
It can be difficult deciding what to do with electronic products once you have finished with them. With lots of things to consider, such as data erasure, it can feel like the easiest thing to do is just throw it away. One thing you should consider though, is selling it on to a company who can go on to refurbish and resell it. Recycling is also a good alternative, but this does not completely close the loop. Refurbishing allows the extension of the product’s lifespan, closing the loop completely, whilst giving you money for your goods. Here at Zixtel, we buy your used equipment for a great price. We go on to refurbish for resale or recycle, meaning you have peace of mind that you are contributing to a greener future and a circular economy.
3 – Buy refurbished
Another way of contributing to a circular economy would be to buy refurbished goods, rather than brand-new. If your business is in need of an IT upgrade, buying refurbished allows you to save money. Firstly, the items themselves are cheaper, but also because you could afford a higher specification meaning you won’t need to upgrade in a few months’ time. Additionally, you are stopping product from going to landfill and therefore reducing the amount of E-waste.
If you need any advice on how you can dispose of any unwanted IT equipment safely and in an environmentally friendly way, call our sales team on 0113 8805 430 or visit our website https://www.zixtel.com/contact/.