The Western world has seemingly adopted a very ‘disposable’ approach to belongings over the last few decades, becoming nonchalant about throwing things away and quickly replacing them with a newer version.
However, even if goods are cheap enough to be updated in quick succession, the environmental impact of producing this much waste is catastrophic.
That is why the Green Party is showing its support for the ‘right to repair’ movement, trying to encourage manufacturers to produce goods that are long-lasting and easy to fix.
Greenworld reported that co-leaders Sian Berry and Jonathan Bartley have signed the Manchester Declaration, which asks for product designers, manufacturers and policymakers to produce items that can easily be repaired.
Mr Bartley said: “We should have the right to goods made to last, designed so that if an element goes wrong it can be repaired … that parts will be available when needed and documentation available to assist the repairer.”
He went on to say it is simply companies “seeking to maximise profits” why this is not currently the case, leading to them “exploiting us all, and trashing the planet”.
Indeed, an investigation in Italy last year found Apple and Samsung to be guilty of ‘planned obsolescence’, designing electronic goods that will break within a short amount of time so customers have to buy new models in the near future.
The companies were charged €15 million (£13.45 million) for doing this, sending a message to other electronic manufacturers that this practice will be penalised.
Millions of household appliances are sent to landfill sites every year, despite some containing substances that are dangerous if they are not disposed of safely. This also misses the opportunity to make use of the working parts to reduce the demand on raw materials for future electronic devices.
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