- About EPEAT
In today’s mobile society, technology is evolving at an accelerated rate leaving consumers coveting the latest advancements and leaving outdated and unwanted electronic equipment ready for the landfill. This Earth Day, 3M is helping to increase rework, repair and recyclability of these gadgets through its Thermal Bonding Films and Plastic Bonding Adhesives.
The electronics bonding solutions from 3M enable manufacturers to achieve higher Electronic Product Environmental Assessment Tool (EPEAT) criteria ratings by earning optional points for enabling greater rework and more effective recycling. EPEAT is a comprehensive global environmental registry that helps consumers, manufacturers and resellers identify environmentally preferable electronics. Full release
Joel Makower at GreenBiz has once again done a great service by plowing into the dozens of studies on green consumers that come out like daffodils around Earth Day. (In case you haven’t noticed the drumbeat, Earth Day is April 22 – don’t miss my presentation and booth at Green Festival at the Javitz Convention Center in NYC!)
Unfortunately the picture is once again anemic – according to the Shelton Group’s EcoPulse study, people appear to be buying recycled, or selecting energy saving devices in some categories, looking for reduced toxins and, consistent with last year’s trends, linking “American made” with increased safety and reduced health impacts. But few consumers appear to frequently make environmentally preferable product choices, based on scrutiny of labels, reduced toxic content, etc.
On the other hand consumers appear to expect companies to be far more active and engaged than they are personally. As Joel summarizes findings in the Cone Green Gap study – “Americans expect companies to address the full environmental impact of a product’s lifecycle, from the impacts associated with manufacturing the product (according to 90 percent of consumers), to the product’s use (88 percent), to its disposal (89 percent).”
This puts companies in a bind – consumers expect
them to address “all their environmental impacts” yet don’t appear to take the time or make the effort to reward them for doing so. Is it any wonder companies shy away from making environmental claims?
EPEAT and other environmental ratings and labels can help cut through the clutter by enabling consumers to easily identify companies who are addressing the full lifecycle of their products, and retailers who are helping them choose products that reduce their personal environmental impact.
Familiarizing consumers with credible, multi-attribute programs and labels is an essential step to moving beyond the conundrum of consumers’ high expectations vs. low commitment. And it’s progress that can be made, with the active involvement of brand owners and retailers.
The endpoint is still conscious consumers who will reward companies who do the right thing – but understanding they still aren’t ready to pull detailed sustainability data to market, we can team up to push solid information their way.
EPEAT Champion the State Electronics Challenge (www.stateelectronicschallenge.net) recently recognized eleven SEC Partners, 9 of whom engaged in EPEAT purchasing initiatives, with awards for their outstanding work in electronics stewardship.
Four Partners achieved Gold level
status for successful implementation of program requirements across all three lifecycle stages- addressing purchasing, use & maintenance and end of life. Three additional Partners were recognized with Silver level awards for addressing two lifecycle stages, and four Partners received Bronze awards for accomplishments addressing one of the lifecycle stages.
EPEAT: The green electronics registry has appointed Robert Frisbee as its new CEO. Frisbee has served as the director of development at the Oregon Sustainability Center since June 2010, and has worked as a private-sector executive founding telecommunications companies Pacific Star Communications, FirstPoint Communications and Electric Lightwave.
EPEAT also named three new board members: Dr. Mike Biddle, president and founder of MBA Polymers, Inc.; Amy Knight, director of corporate social responsibility for Hasbro; and Carl Smith, president and CEO of Call2Recycle. Original
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