A new norm for sustainable consumption of IT hardware

The market for reusing and refurbishing redundant devices is growing fast, and it’s sustainable by nature. A new development by the market leader is now making reuse ‘closed loop’.

Published on: Sep 3, 2020 | Written by: Closing the Loop

Reusing electronics makes sense from an economic and social perspective. Selling a used device means getting cash for stuff you don’t need. That stuff often gets a second life in the hands of someone that would not have been able to afford a new product. A GeSI member came up with a way to also increase the environmental profile of reuse.  Dutch company Closing the Loop offers a ‘circular service’ that allows for waste-free reuse. It collects and recycles an end-of-life device for each used device sold on the global market, as these disposed, used devices can not be tracked and could end up as waste. And here’s the unique part: Closing the Loop collects solely out of countries that lack electronic waste systems. 

This type of ‘e-waste compensation’ had been adopted by organisations across the globe. It has been recognised as a way forward in ‘circularity’, the economic model that aims to prevent waste. But Closing the Loop was looking for ways to scale its solution. Ingram Micro, a global leader in IT services, saw an opportunity to make e-waste compensation as a possible new standard for the electronics industry. The two organisations are now bringing together the best of two worlds: pragmatic environmental impact, available at scale.

“While we know the notebooks we recycle internally go through a responsible disposal process, we don’t have control over the disposal of notebooks we resell,” Todd Zegers, global vice president of ITAD at Ingram Micro, states. “So, we decided to take proactive measures to compensate them. By reselling them for re-use and working with Closing the Loop, we’re not only giving the notebook computers a second or third life, we’re also ensuring an equivalent amount of electronic waste is removed from the global waste stream in the event future owners of the notebooks don’t recycle them responsibly – and the devices end up in a landfill.”

“E-waste is often seen as a problem, but it also represents opportunities for making existing IT processes greener, or waste-neutral. Shifting e-waste to where it can be recycled in a responsible manner gives valuable resources a second life, keeping them in the loop of the circular economy,” says Closing the Loop founder Joost de Kluijver.

Ingram Micro Commerce & Lifecycle Services’ ITAD group is a leading worldwide provider of enterprise IT asset disposition (ITAD), lifecycle support services, onsite data destruction, IT asset repair and reuse, and e-waste recycling services. Our services and processes reduce the risk, cost, and complexity associated with securely managing IT assets throughout their lifecycle in compliance with environmental and data security regulations. For more information about Ingram Micro ITAD services, visit http://www.ingrammicroservices.com/itad/

Founded in 2012 by Joost de Kluijver, Closing the Loop offers users, buyers and sellers of IT Hardware an easy way to engage in sustainable consumption for their devices. The award-winning social enterprise developed an NGO supported service known as waste-compensation. It collects African scrap phones on behalf of customers. By recycling e-waste on their behalf, CTL compensates the waste-footprint of its customers' devices. CTL works with and rewards local communities for safely and effectively reducing global e-waste. Learn more at https://www.closingtheloop.eu/

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