“Recycling is the action that gets the most attention from big electronics brands, likely because it is the one that doesn’t require changing product designs or business models.” [Framework Computer Inc]
Framework is a company which makes laptops and computers – but with a difference:
Framework Computer Inc is an American laptop manufacturer. The company positions itself as a proponent of the electronics right to repair movement, and their laptops are designed to be easy to disassemble, with replaceable parts... In November 2021, Time magazine listed the Framework Laptop on their list of the 100 Best Inventions of 2021. Fast Company listed the Framework Laptop on their list of the Most Innovative Companies of 2022. Framework Computer – Wikipedia
This is what they do:
Fix Consumer Electronics: We know consumer electronics can be better for you and for the environment. Unlike most products, ours are open for you to repair and upgrade.
What We’re Fixing: Consumer electronics is broken. We’ve all had the experience of a busted screen, button, or connector that can’t be fixed, battery life degrading without a path for replacement, or being unable to add more storage when full. Individually, this is irritating and requires us to make unnecessary and expensive purchases of new products to get around what should be easy problems to solve. Globally though, it’s much worse. We create over fifty million tons of e-waste each year. That’s 6 kg or 13 lb per person on earth per year, made up of our former devices. We need to improve recyclability, but the biggest impact we can make is generating less waste to begin with by making our products last longer.
The conventional wisdom in the industry is that making products repairable makes them thicker, heavier, uglier, less robust, and more expensive. We’re here to prove that wrong and fix consumer electronics, one category at a time…
Here’s a very inspiring blog piece:
Reduce, Reuse, Repair, Recycle: “Reduce, Reuse, Recycle” is a philosophy we believe in deeply, but there is a variant we like even more: “Reduce, Reuse, Repair, Recycle.” The sequence within this is critical: “Reduce” is the most impactful action, and each subsequent step is a fallback. Reuse what you can’t reduce, repair what you can’t reuse, and recycle what you can’t repair. Recycling should only be the last resort after we’ve failed to find a way to enable longevity. However, it’s the action that gets the most attention from big electronics brands, likely because it is the one that doesn’t require changing product designs or business models. At Framework, we start at reducing instead… Framework | Reduce, Reuse, Repair, Recycle
And the points they make resonate far and wide:
Back in October 2021, Prime Minister Boris Johnson told a group of school children that recycling “doesn’t work” and “is not the answer”. ‘Recycling doesn’t work’ – Vision Group for Sidmouth
The critical onus on architects and developers is to retrofit, reuse and reimagine our existing building stock, making use of the “embodied carbon” that has already been expended, rather than contributing to escalating emissions with further demolition and new construction. Recycle, repair, reuse… buildings – Vision Group for Sidmouth
From clothes to cars and buildings, all our new ‘stuff’ takes energy and resources to produce. If we want to cut down the use of high carbon materials like steel and cement then we need a new attitude. We need to think about sharing more and valuing what we have, we need products that are designed to last longer. make less stuff, use less stuff, buy less stuff – Vision Group for Sidmouth
We are all familiar with the 4Rs but here is Sarah’s 7Rs take on that mnemonic: Refuse, Reduce, Reuse, Repair, Rot, Recycle, Return. Sarah Allen of Exmouth suggests… we reuse stuff! – Vision Group for Sidmouth