E-waste is estimated to reach a record high in 2018. Tech companies must be held accountable for profiteering from short product lifespans and a “throwaway” culture, NGOs say.
The world is on track to produce a record 50 million metric tons of potentially toxic e-waste in 2018 – that’s equivalent to almost 5,000 Eiffel towers, in just one year.
E-waste has increased as the lifespan of our electronic devices has fallen. People are throwing away their goods at a much faster rate as tech companies make repair and reuse either impossible or too expensive.
In a recent scandal, Apple even admitted to deliberately slowing down some iPhone models through a software update coinciding with the release of a new model.
By reducing the lifespan of a product companies may drive sales, but this comes at the expense of citizens and the planet, said the European Environmental Bureau (EEB).
The EEB launched a short film this week to highlight the problem and urged EU governments to pass proposed laws that would oblige manufacturers to make products more durable and more easily repairable.