Transforming Big Tech into Clean Tech: Waste Management Solutions for Tech Companies
Technology is synonymous with opportunity; with the introduction of cell phones in the late 70’s and the evolution of smartphones, the internet is now mobile! 97% of Americans own a cell phone of some kind, and this trend is continuing upwards across the world – and we have tech companies to thank for this. Tech companies have a huge social impact, but also, a major environmental impact – and so much of that is e-waste.
Electronic waste (e-waste) is what remains from older electronics that have since evolved. Due to lack of education and infrastructure, many of our old devices end up in the trash. The problems associated with e-waste extend far beyond taking up space in landfills; many of the metals and materials in the electronics leach toxins into soils and waterways.
Electronic waste is both an environmental problem and a cultural problem. The side effects of our consumer society in America have a global impact; oftentimes, older electronics end up in countries that are growing or in the global south. Whether the purpose of these electronics is to be used again or recycled for parts, there are dangers associated with exporting our e-waste.
E-waste is a constant challenge of consumerism, but it is up for tech companies to decide how they want to confront this issue. More companies are responsible for sourcing materials to satisfy sustainability initiatives – but in order to fulfill true circularity, companies must also focus on the backend: what happens to electronics after their lives are over?
Waste management plans are a key component of Environmental Social Governance (ESG)
Big Tech is under more and more pressure from investors, stakeholders, and the general public to be transparent with Environmental Social Governance (ESG) initiatives; ESG is a term used to describe the intentional efforts directed to reduce environmental impact, while elevating responsibilities of social and corporate governance.
As a tech company, a quantitative way of measuring ESG is through implementing a waste management program; it is one of the most important and tangible ways to track sustainability initiatives and increase ESG performance. From an environmental social governance perspective, big tech needs to do more – and the easiest way to take a step in the right direction is by implementing a waste management plan.
This starts with responsible disposal – which unfortunately, is still an infrastructure challenge. Many companies in the waste and recycling sector recognize this challenge, and are focusing efforts to solve our e-waste problems. Along with years of industry experience, Smart Waste is helping big tech companies manage their e-waste by creating waste management plans, supported by their responsible recyclers certificate, R2v3.
Smart Waste is helping to transform big tech into clean tech!
These days, being part of a “tech company” is a bit of an umbrella term – this is because technology is everywhere. You can work in a small home office, yet be part of a huge software company and be reliable on an even bigger data center, somewhere off in a remote location. You may be involved in technology on the hardware side, working on industrial sites to develop the materials we use in our every-day devices, like batteries or data chips. You can drive people around or deliver food and still be considered an employee of a tech company. Regardless of what industry you fall within, the chances of it somehow being connected with technology are high.
Fortunately, many companies are adopting the term “clean tech”. The goal of clean tech is to offer a product (hardware) or service (software) that provides solutions to global challenges and reduces negative environmental impacts. The Cleantech Group has outlined 11 different verticals within the clean tech space; with a focus on environmental protection activities and the sustainable use of resources, recycling and waste is one of the most important industries of the clean tech sector.
Regardless of the waste your company produces, whether it be direct or indirect, a waste management program allows your organization to create metrics surrounding your environmental impact and create a positive social change.
With over 60 years of combined industry knowledge and experience, the team at Smart Waste is well-positioned to manage your organization’s waste management needs from start to finish.
Avoid contamination fees & keep your company in compliance, while joining other forward-thinking companies in the circular economy. Book a meeting to learn more about what you can do to properly deal with your waste!