Enhancing reuse and resource recovery of electrical and electronic equipment with reverse logistics to meet carbon reduction targets
conference contributionposted on 11.09.2018, 08:42 by Christine Cole, Alex Gnanapragasam, Jagdeep Singh, Tim Cooper
© 2018 The Authors. Published by Elsevier B.V. This is an open access article under the CC BY-NC-ND license. Technological advances, with increasing numbers of products containing complex electronic circuitry, have resulted in e-waste becoming the fastest-growing global waste stream. High levels of embodied carbon in these products ensure that, to meet emissions reduction targets proposed by the United Nations Paris Agreement, tackling e-waste requires strategies to address climate change United Nations Sustainable Development Goal 13 (UNSDG13). This paper identifies the contribution improved reverse logistics can make to extending product lifetimes through facilitating reuse. Semi-structured interviews were conducted with academics, industry-leaders and policymakers in the United Kingdom and Europe. This research identified that improvements in availability and efficiency of reverse logistics processes would increase reuse potential and efficient resource recovery. Availability and efficiency challenges can be addressed through careful promotion, incentivisation, and engagement of existing compliance schemes. If these challenges are approached from a life cycle perspective, it will be possible to protect against value loss in global supply chains (UNSDG12) and address the climate action agenda.
This work was supported by the United Kingdom’s Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council [grant number EP/N022645/1]
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